September 29, 2022

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The Labor Council seeks to force Amazon to return the fired worker

The Labor Council seeks to force Amazon to return the fired worker

The Federal Labor Council seeks to reinstate Amazon An employee was fired in the early days of the pandemic after leading a protest that called on the company to do more to protect workers from COVID-19.

Gerald Bryson, who was working at an Amazon warehouse in New York City on Staten Island, helped lead the April 2020 protest. Frank Kerl, Bryson’s attorney, said that while he was away from work during the protest, Bryson got into a dispute with another worker. Amazon later fired him for violating the vulgar language policy.

Bryson filed an unfair labor practice case in 2020, claiming Amazon retaliated against him. Later that year, the National Labor Relations Board said it found merit in the complaint.

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The Amazon logo in Douai, northern France, April 16, 2020. (AP Photo/Michel Spingler, File)

Amazon workers Press for union At the Staten Island warehouse where Bryson worked, and at a warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama. Pro-union workers complained of long shifts and lack of time to take breaks.

People arrive to work at an Amazon distribution center in the Staten Island area of ​​New York, Monday, October 25, 2021. (AP Photo/ Craig Ruttle/ Associated Press)

The Staten Island facility will begin in-person voting next week on whether to form a union, while those in Bessemer are currently voting by mail.

Kelly Nantel, a spokeswoman for Seattle-based Amazon, questioned the timing of the labor council’s decision ahead of the union vote, saying “they’ve known the facts on this issue for more than 18 months.”

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“They are fighting to protect behavior that no employer or co-worker should tolerate,” Nantel said.

If the court approves the job board’s request, Bryson will be able to return to his job at Amazon.

In a court filing in the Eastern District of New York on Thursday, NLRB asked the online retail giant to post a copy of the court order in all break rooms, restrooms, bathroom stalls and other places where the company sends notices to its employees at the JFK8 facility where Bryson worked.

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The Labor Council is also asking Amazon to distribute copies in English and Spanish of the court order on websites or apps it uses to communicate with its employees, and to have the order read out to workers during one or more mandatory meetings.

A man holds an Amazon Prime package on March 20, 2018 in Berlin, Germany. (Photo by Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty Images)

The complaint, filed by the board of directors, accused the company of “blatant unfair labor practices”. She said that if Amazon did not rehire Bryson’s employees at the company, “it will inevitably conclude that the board cannot effectively protect their rights” under federal labor law.

“No matter the size of the employer, it is important that workers know their rights – particularly during union elections – and that the NLRB will advocate for them loudly,” said Cathy Drew King, the regional director of the NLRB office overseeing the lawsuit. in the current situation.

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New York Attorney General Letitia James, who is Amazon sued over COVID-19 security protocolsalso filed an application in December to force Amazon to re-hire Christian SmallsAnother fired employee. Smalls is currently a leader in an organization called the Amazon Workers Union, which is trying to form the JFK8 union.