Warehouse Workers at Amazon Strike

Amazon Warehouse Workers Stage Organized Strikes Demanding $3 Raises

In a show of solidarity and coordination, Amazon warehouse workers across three separate locations shut down the conveyor belts and walked off of the night shift yesterday in a demonstration around hourly pay and breaks at work.

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Two warehouse locations in New York and one in Maryland which serves the Washington D.C area were the participants in the coordinated strike. At the warehouse known as ZYO1, in Long Island City, Queens, 5 workers which made up the majority of the night shift walked out of the warehouse at 4:30 a.m., after shutting off the conveyor belt.

Outside the warehouse, the striking Amazon warehouse workers were joined by 26 workers from the DBK1 facility, a neighboring warehouse, in Woodside, Queens. They had walked off the job earlier in the night at 2:45 a.m and together were chanting “Better pay, longer breaks!” and “Amazonians United will never be defeated.”

Amazon Warehouse Workers Demand Raises and Longer Breaks

The striking workers were demanding a $3 an hour pay raise stating that the current inflation of house, gas, and food prices has meant they currently don’t have enough to survive. On top of this Amazon has put back the worker’s breaks from 20 minutes to 15 minutes after they added the 5-minute buffer during the pandemic to ensure social distancing was observed.

The Amazon warehouse in upper Marlboro, Maryland, known as DMD9, which serves the Washington, D.C., and Baltimore metro area, saw 30 workers walk out of the warehouse at 6 a.m. on Wednesday.

“I make $16.90 after a year and a half of working here…First of all, we have a Nordstrom warehouse across the street that starts at $19 an hour…Many of us work multiple jobs. People are hurting themselves on this job. Their bodies are breaking down. I have a co-worker who hands out Aleve every day. We got nothing during peak, but they doubled our volume in our warehouse. Maybe we could get a thank you.”

Linda, an Amazon Worker at DMD9

The strike coincides with a surge in organizing at Amazon warehouses around the country. In Bessemer, Alabama, Amazon warehouse workers at BHM1 are currently voting in mail-in ballot re-election on whether to unionize after the controversy last year. In Staten Island, Amazon warehouse workers at JFK8, the city’s largest warehouse, will vote in person on whether to unionize later this month.

Amazon did release a statement on the strike action:

“We’re proud to offer industry-leading pay, competitive benefits, and the opportunity for all to grow within the company,”

“While there are many established ways of ensuring we hear the opinions of our employees inside our business, we also respect the right for some to make their opinions known externally.”

Kelly Nantel, Director of National Media Relations, Amazon.

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