Amazon will have its first union thanks to the efforts of a young Brotha who decided to stand up against a goliath.
Union organizer Chris Smalls who created the independent labor union named Amazon Labor Union (ALU) has pulled enough votes together to successfully force Amazon to recognize its first labor union in the country.
In what proved to be a historical proceeding more than 2,600 employees voted to be represented by Amazon Labor Union at ALU’s Staten Island conference.
Smalls and labor allies had gained notoriety thanks to coming to the Black media for his initial exposure during the 2020 pandemic and using social media platforms to promote their message ever since. Smalls also went directly to the community by asking for financial support through Gofundme.
The next step will be for Smalls and the ALU to fight for a contractual agreement between them and Amazon that better addresses the worker’s needs and compensation.
Starting 2 years ago, Smalls and dozens of other employees walked out of a Amazon warehouse due to unsafe work conditions and employees reportedly having to watch others suffer a fatal injuries as a result of Amazon’s carelessness.
Amazon has insisted that its has always met OSHA guidelines and the conglomerate stated that it may contest the recent Staten Island vote.
“They fired all of us as soon as we started to organize, but here we are.” said Smalls who was jubilant after the victory.
Smalls insist that he was fired for asking Amazon to sanitize the facility once several employees had been confirmed with cases of the Wuhan virus.
This comes 2 years after a leaked internal memo from Amazon insulted Smalls and the movement, ironically claiming that Smalls was unintelligent.
“He’s not smart, or articulate, and to the extent the press wants to focus on us versus him, we will be in a much stronger PR position than simply explaining for the umpteenth time how we’re trying to protect workers,” wrote Amazon General Counsel David Zapolsky in his notes for the meeting.
“Make him the most interesting part of the story, and if possible make him the face of the entire union/organizing movement.” Zapolsky finished.
Well if its any concession, Smalls is now the face of an international movement.
–Michael Lyles, B1Daily