Amazon has won over the activists hoping to build the company’s first unionised warehouse in the States.
Labour officials said workers at the Bessemer, Alabama warehouse voted 1,798 to 738 against the effort.
That represented a majority of votes cast in the contest, which was seen as a key to test for Amazon. This happened after global criticism of its treatment of workers during the COVID pandemic.
The union said it would question the results.
It accused Amazon of meddling with the right of workers to vote in a free and fair election. Including lying to staff about the implications of the vote in mandatory staff meetings. Also, pushing the postal service to place a mailbox on company grounds to cow workers.
If successful, the union drive would have meant that Amazon would have to negotiate a contract with union officials. Amazon is the second-largest hiring company in the US, and it would have had to deal with work rules and wages.
RWDSU leaders had hoped that a triumph would set new measures for the firm’s thousands of employees across the nation.
But Amazon had fought that the union did not mirror the views of most of its staffs. Moreover, it said it offered competitive benefits and salaries. It also told workers that the union would collect hundreds of dollars in dues without delivering changes.
Professor of labour studies at Rutgers University, Rebecca Givan, said she was not surprised by the outcome. Given the outsize vigour, companies have to fight union forces under modern US law.
The election in Bessemer, a town of 27,000 outsizes of Birmingham, was watched closely.
Last month US president Joe Biden described the vote as a vitally important choice. National Democratic politicians and celebrities travelled to the state to hold the union campaign. Moreover, it also drew some Republican backing.
Christy Hoffman is the UNI Global Union General Secretary, and it s a global federation of unions. She said Amazon’s conduct during the campaign showed that the US labour law was broken.
But she added that the movement had inspired workers elsewhere already. Also, Bessemer’s impact has already curled out far beyond the warehouse walls and cannot be lessened.