Amazon Workers in Europe Walk Out
Once again workers at Amazon warehouses in Europe have staged a walkout during one of the company’s busiest times of the year – Black Friday. Workers in Germany struck for 24 hours on Black Friday and in Spain on Friday and Saturday. They are demanding better pay and working conditions. Workers make as little as 10.78 euros ($12.23) an hour. The owner of Amazon, Jeff Bezos, is currently the richest person in the world, according to Forbes. Over the past year he has made roughly $80,000,000,000 or $38.5 million an hour.
Workers in the United Kingdom and Italy have also gone on strike. “Our European Fulfillment Network is fully operational,” Amazon said in a statement to The Washington Post. “And we continue to focus on delivering for our customers and reports to the contrary are simply wrong.” Jeff Bezos also owns the Washington Post. Earlier this year Amazon also announced that it would be opening two more U.S. based headquarters.
One is in Northern Virginia and the other in Long Island City, areas that are already greatly gentrified. This gentrification will only get worse as they will likely follow the path of Seattle which has been pricing its citizens further and further out of the city. Additionally, earlier this year, workers struck on “Prime Day,” another big sales day for the online giant.
Workers in Germany have been agitating for better pay and working conditions for several years now at Amazon warehouses – or as Amazon calls them – fulfillment centers. “The conditions our members at Amazon are working under are frankly inhuman,” said a statement by Tim Roache, General Secretary of the GMB, a trade union in the United Kingdom. “They are breaking bones, being knocked unconscious and being taken away in ambulances.” He added: “We’re standing up and saying enough is enough. These are people making Amazon its money. People with kids, homes, bills to pay — they’re not robots. Jeff Bezos is the richest bloke on the planet; he can afford to sort this out.”