A new campaign for better treatment and working conditions of Amazon workers has ramped up with the launch of a new whistleblowing hotline.
‘Action on Amazon’, led by Unite the Union, hopes the hotline can help workers in warehouses across the region raise concerns around working conditions.
Joe Rollin of Unite the Union, said: “We are collecting all stories and then the next part of the campaign is launching a neutrality agreement which is a pledge by Amazon to not dismiss workers who want to unionise.”
The agreement will be an effort to persuade Amazon to guarantee workers’ rights in the next stage of the campaign.
South Yorkshire is home to a number of large Amazon warehouses, most notably in a facility in Doncaster which employs a large number of people.
The campaign was launched two weeks ago, with a series of protests across the UK including one in Leeds last Wednesday.
Rollin said: “Amazon has been quite hostile to workers who want to organise themselves through unions and we can see that with the recent events in Alabama.”
Earlier this month in the US state of Alabama, workers had rejected unionisation in an election. However, Amazon has been widely accused of interfering with that election.
Anonymous testimonies on Action on Amazon’s website allege mistreatment including one that claims workers testing positive for Covid-19 are not paid for the isolation period and continue to come to work.
Another details the so-called ‘power hour’ where workers are expected to meet high item targets in the last hour of the shift.
The group is already working with activist across the four nations of the UK, as well as aiming to link up with similar groups around the world.
Workers have been urged to contact the confidential hotline at 0800 14 14 61 to share their experiences.