Amazon’s Alabama union vote closed, but results could take weeks



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The closely watched union vote at Amazon’s warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, ends this week – but a result is likely in at least a week.

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Workers at the facility, who have been voting for a month and could become the first Amazon workers in the United States to be represented by an employment contract – have until Monday to vote as the vote counting process begins Tuesday at 10 a.m., according to the Retail, Wholesale and Department Stores Union, which spearheaded the initiative.

The National Labor Relations Board said the count could take up to a week and Amazon and the union can challenge the ballots, prolonging the process.

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If some 5,800 workers vote for a union contract – the number of workers the RWDSU claims to support unionizing – it could open the floodgates for the 800,000 Amazon warehouse workers following in their footsteps here, an outcome the monster online fought head-on and nail against, including the launch of a website, DoItWithoutDues.com.

There are approximately 6,000 employees who received ballots in this campaign.

The closely watched union vote at Amazon’s warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, ends this week – but a result is likely in at least a week. (AP Photo / Bill Barrow)

Both parties are generally expected to challenge the results based on a number of factors, including incorrect job classifications and ineligibility based on dates of employment. Protests must take place within five days of the vote. Whatever the outcome, the initiative contributed to strikes at Amazon facilities around the world, including in Germany last week, and highlighted Amazon’s workplace policies, including including the speed at which employees are required to work or deliver packages as well as their break time and hourly wages. A report that Amazon drivers were forced to pee bottles to meet their quotas went viral last week, when an Amazon official denied such reports.

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Politicians from President Biden to Marco Rubio (Senator R-Fla) and Bernie Sanders (Senator D-Vt) weighed in on the election with the president warning Amazon – not to mention the company by name – not to interfere with the process .

Even if workers vote to unionize, it could take years of negotiation to strike a first contract between Amazon and the union, according to reports.

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