Amazon workers strike in UK for first time ever today - GMB urges company to give workers a pay rise
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For the first time ever, Amazon workers in the UK are taking part in legally mandated strike action. Hundreds of workers at one of the company’s receive centres are walking out today (January 25).
Workers are striking in anger over the company’s 50 pence pay offer. Results of the ballot were announced in mid December and the date for industrial action was confirmed earlier this month.
As a result, workers at the recieve centre in Coventry are striking. A significant 98 per cent of workers voted in favour of strike action from a turnout of over 63 per cent.
Around 2,000 people are employed at the centre. This 98 per cent figure in favour of strike action is of 284 eligible GMB members and 178 people voted in favour of strike action.
Amanda Gearing, GMB senior organiser, said: “Amazon workers in Coventry are set to make history on January 25, becoming the first ever Amazon workers in the UK to go on strike. They’ve shown they’re willing to put themselves on the line to fight for what’s right.
“But people working for one of the most valuable companies in the world shouldn’t have to threaten strike action just to win a wage they can live on. GMB urges Amazon UK bosses to give workers a proper pay rise and avoid industrial action altogether.”
Amazon workers in the USA took strike action towards the end of 2022. One of the dates workers walked out was Black Friday, one of the busiest days for online retail.
An Amazon spokepserson said: “A tiny proportion of our workforce is involved. In fact, according to the verified figures, only a fraction of 1% of our UK employees voted in the ballot - and that includes those who voted against industrial action.
“We appreciate the great work our teams do throughout the year and we’re proud to offer competitive pay which starts at a minimum of between £10.50 and £11.45 per hour, depending on location. This represents a 29 per cent increase in the minimum hourly wage paid to Amazon employees since 2018.
“Employees are also offered comprehensive benefits that are worth thousands more—including private medical insurance, life assurance, subsidised meals and an employee discount, to name a few.”