Although a recent union organizing drive at an Amazon fulfilment center in Alabama failed, union leaders are calling for more organizing attempts as companies continue to undermine workplace safety and worker rights.
International Brotherhood of Teamsters Local 1932 Secretary-Treasurer/Principal Officer Randy Korgan discussed the need to organize Amazon workers on the AWF Union Podcast. Korgan also explained what Teamsters Local 1932 members do and more.
Organizing at Amazon
According to Korgan, the Teamsters have plenty of room to organize Amazon workers. Amazon has workers in multiple Teamster-related settings, such as the warehouse and delivery.
Many Amazon employees want to join a union, as was demonstrated during the recent unsuccessful organizing drive in Alabama. Korgan said these workers are mistreated, underpaid and work in dangerous conditions. With such a high level of turnover, it is impossible for Amazon to properly train an employee. The existing dangers of working in a warehouse are amplified when untrained workers are surrounded by other untrained workers.
However, Amazon has told employees they do not need a union and have taken steps to block organizing drives in their warehouses.
Deregulation in the trucking and warehouse industries and failing infrastructure
Korgan said it is important for those in the trucking and warehousing industries to join a union for their own safety. When a trucker is responsible for a massive truck and cargo, having the best training will help limit accidents.
While training helps, truckers also depend on road conditions. Korgan explained how infrastructure investments are vital to trucking jobs. Not only do structurally safe roads, bridges and highways keep drivers safe, but they also help products get delivered on-time.