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U.S. senators query Amazon on issues it tracks workers, limits unionization

© Reuters. Signage is seen at an Amazon facility in Bethpage on Lengthy Island in New York

By Nandita Bose

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – 4 Democratic U.S. senators on Thursday despatched a letter to Inc’s (O:) Chief Government Jeff Bezos, demanding solutions over the corporate’s alleged strikes to trace and monitor workers and restrict unionization efforts.

Democratic senators Brian Schatz, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and Kirsten Gillibrand requested the corporate for particulars on the steps it takes to discourage employees from organizing, the way it tracks employees who take part in strikes and the legislation companies Amazon contracts with for union avoidance.

“The truth that Amazon has determined to closely put money into methods to retaliate in opposition to freedom of expression about unsafe and unhealthy working situations, and to seek advice from organizing and employees’ rights mobilization efforts as threats in opposition to the corporate equal to these posed by hate teams and terrorism, is unacceptable,” the letter led by senator Brian Schatz mentioned.

In September, a analysis paper from the Open Markets Institute, a Washington-based analysis and advocacy group, additionally claimed Amazon depends on in depth employee surveillance to spice up worker output and probably restrict unionization efforts round the USA.

The letter from the lawmakers on Thursday referenced a number of media articles which have reported related actions taken by the retailer.

Earlier this month, Amazon mentioned greater than 19,000 of its U.S. frontline employees contracted the coronavirus this yr, or 1.44% of the overall, a disclosure sought by labor advocates who’ve criticized Amazon’s response to the pandemic.

Amazon didn’t instantly reply to a request for touch upon Thursday. In an earlier response, the corporate had mentioned it doesn’t monitor or monitor people , who could also be organizing, planning strikes or speaking to the media.

Reuters reported in Might that Amazon has lengthy resisted unionization. Amazon spokeswoman Rachael Lighty mentioned on the time that Amazon already presents what labor teams are requesting.

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