Amazon Coventry workers make formal bid for trade union recognition

Amazon boss Jeff Bezos has big plans for the industry...if only we knew what they were
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos

GMB Union believes the legal threshold for mandatory recognition – 51% of the workforce – has now been passed



11 May 2023

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GMB union has today submitted a bid for formal recognition at Amazon Coventry to the Central Arbitration Committee (CAC).

The CAC – the UK government body responsible for regulating collective bargaining between workers and employers – will now step in after a ten day opportunity for Amazon to resolve recognition voluntarily ended.

With more than 700 GMB members now at the Coventry fulfilment centre, it’s thought the legal threshold for mandatory recognition – 51% of the workforce – has now been passed,

However, GMB Union claims workers in the warehouse say bosses have threatened to flood the site with up to 1,000 new staff in a bid to escape their obligations to recognise the union.

The bid will now be considered by the Central Arbitration Committee and would, if successful, be the first-time workers at a UK Amazon site have won recognition of a trade union.

“Our members have been crystal clear since day one of their industrial action; they expect their employer to talk pay with their union,” said Amanda Gearing, GMB senior organiser.

“The fact Amazon have flat-out refused opportunities to do just that underlines why GMB members at Amazon are so determined to win this fight.

“Amazon bosses appear to be threatening to flood the warehouse with up to 1,000 new staff in a bid to dodge their legal obligations. They are running scared.

“With industrial action escalating to new fulfilment centres, it’s clear Amazon are facing an historical moment that can no longer ignore,” Gearing said.

A spokesperson for Amazon UK previously said: “We offer competitive pay, comprehensive benefits, opportunities for career growth, all while working in a safe, modern work environment.

“At Amazon, these benefits and opportunities come with the job, as does the ability to communicate directly with the leadership of the company.”

The company added that it respects its employees’ rights to choose to join or not join a union and that it regularly reviews pay rates.



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