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Amazon seeks to overturn union win, says vote was tainted

AP – Amazon is seeking to overturn the historic union victory at one of its New York City warehouses, arguing in a legal filing on Friday that union organisers and the National Labour Relations Board acted in a way that tainted the results. It now wants to redo the election.

The e-commerce giant listed 25 objections in the filing obtained by The Associated Press, accusing organisers with the nascent Amazon Labour Union of intimidating workers to vote for the union, a claim an attorney representing the group has called “patently absurd”.

“The employees have spoken,” attorney Eric Milner said in a statement on Thursday after Amazon’s initial planned objections were made public in another legal filing.

“Amazon is choosing to ignore that, and instead engage in stalling tactics to avoid the inevitable – coming to the bargaining table and negotiating for a contract” on behalf of the workers, he said.

Warehouse workers in Staten Island cast 2,654 votes – or about 55 per cent – in favour of a union, giving the fledgling group enough support to pull off a victory last Friday.

In one objection, Amazon said organisers “intentionally created hostile confrontations in front of eligible voters”, by interrupting the mandatory meetings the company held to persuade its employees to reject the union drive.

In a filing released earlier this month, the company disclosed it spent about USD4.2 million last year on labour consultants. The company also accused organisers of improperly polling workers.