Palmdale Amazon Drivers on Unfair Labor Practice Strike Demand Amazon Bargain Over Low Pay, Dangerous Working Conditions
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(NEWARK, Calif.) — Striking Amazon delivery drivers and dispatchers from Palmdale, Calif., extended their picket line to a Bay Area warehouse (OAK5/OAK7) today, to demand the e-commerce giant stop its unfair labor practices. The growing strike will continue until Amazon reinstates the unlawfully terminated Palmdale employees, recognizes the Teamsters, respects the contract negotiated by the workers, and bargains with the Teamsters Union to address low pay and dangerous working conditions.
“It is getting hotter and hotter, but Amazon makes us deliver packages in vans without working A/C and limits how much water we can take,” said Cecilia Porter, a Palmdale Amazon driver who traveled to Newark. “We are on strike to stop Amazon’s unfair labor practices and hold the company accountable for the safety and livelihood of its workers.”
Amazon drivers and dispatchers began their unfair labor practice strike at an Amazon delivery station in Palmdale, Calif., on June 24. They have picketed 10 Amazon warehouses around the country during their month-long strike, including facilities in California, New Jersey, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Georgia.
“Since this strike started on June 24, these Amazon workers have remained united in pursuit of fair pay and safe jobs,” said Victor Mineros, Secretary-Treasurer of Teamsters Local 396 in Los Angeles. “Despite Amazon’s illegal refusal to recognize their union or engage in bargaining, the community and fellow workers in this industry have consistently shown unwavering support. Millions of Teamster members stand shoulder to shoulder, with firm resolve, supporting their brothers and sisters at Amazon. Together, we are resolute in holding this corporate criminal accountable for its treatment of their workers.”
“We stand in solidarity with the Amazon Teamsters from Palmdale in their fight against Amazon’s abuses,” said Jason Rabinowitz, President of Teamsters Joint Council 7. “Teamsters at UPS just won a historic tentative agreement by organizing and demanding what they deserve. It is great to see Amazon workers fighting for what they need too and every Teamster supports them.”
The 84 workers in Palmdale joined Teamsters Local 396 and bargained a contract with Amazon’s Delivery Service Partner (DSP), Battle-Tested Strategies (BTS), in April. Despite the absolute control it wields over BTS and workers’ terms and conditions of employment, Amazon has refused to recognize and honor the union contract. Instead, Amazon has engaged in dozens of unfair labor practices in violation of federal labor law, including terminating the entire unit of newly-organized workers.
Amazon drivers in Palmdale organized with the Teamsters to protect their safety in extreme temperatures, which regularly exceed 100 degrees Fahrenheit during Palmdale summers. Their Teamster contract guarantees the rights of workers to drive safe equipment and refuse unsafe deliveries. Making the contract’s protections a reality will require an overhaul of Amazon’s exploitative labor practices.
Founded in 1903, the Teamsters Union represents 1.2 million hardworking people in the U.S., Canada, and Puerto Rico. Visit Teamster.org to learn more and follow us on Twitter @Teamsters and on Facebook at Facebook.com/teamsters.