May 27, 2024

Amazon workers in Canada apply for union representation with Unifor

Amazon's push to advance workers' rights is gaining momentum around the world.

This week, workers at two Amazon locations in the Vancouver area filed claims with the British Columbia Labor Relations Board (BCLRB). Formation of a union in Unifor A. UNI is a member of Global Union. The move is part of a growing wave of Amazon workers

“Amazon workers demand job security, health and safety, and fair wages,” he said Lana Payne, Unifor President. “Building a democratic union in their workplace will help them achieve their goals.”

The demand in Canada comes as a growing number of workers in the UK have been hit by a wave of strikes at the GMB union. In the United States, unions such as the RWDSU and the Teamsters are actively organizing workers. Militancy is growing with ver.di in Germany, and workers are engaging like never before in India.

“What happens in Canada matters not just to these hundreds of workers, but to the 1.5 million Amazon workers around the world,” said Mathias Bolton, head of trade at UNI. “Unfortunately, we're seeing Amazon use its despicable union-busting tactics in British Columbia around the world. But we know the solution to this global problem of union-busting is global unity among workers, and we stand with them. UNIFOR members are pushing for a collective bargaining agreement.”

The Amazon Global Union Alliance, led by UNI Global Union, brings together more than 50 unions from more than 20 countries. The international alliance aims to push Amazon to improve labor practices and recognize unions globally.

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British Columbia labor laws require 45 percent of employees to sign union cards to trigger an election and 55 percent for automatic certification. Amazon workers began organizing at Unifor in June 2023. The world will be watching to see what happens next.

Read Unifor's announcement here.