2019’s upcoming Amazon Prime Day right around the corner and Prime members are gearing up for what is sure to be one busy day for employees at the profitable online shopping company. However, with the corporation having often been subject to the discussion of flawed labor conditions, Minnesotan Amazon workers will be going on strike during Prime Day.
While Amazon has traditionally been very consumer-friendly, offering those in the gaming market regular discounts on video games, they have garnered a negative reputation with many of their warehouse employees. Although Amazon is attempting to account for this by offering a wage of $15 an hour for every employee, it appears this has not made much of an impact in some regions. Amazon warehouse employees in Shakopee, Minnesota are organizing a strike for Prime Day on July 15, which is set to be one of the site’s most-trafficked days of the year with sizable discounts on a plethora of items, including games, electronics, clothing, and more.
Many protest participants expressed their commitment to the upcoming strike. However, the company itself issued a response via email, stating that “Amazon offers already what this outside organization is asking for.” The email adds, “We invite anyone to see for themselves by taking a tour of the facility” located in Shakopee, Minnesota.
The protest taking place will be in the form of a halt to workflow that will last about six hours in total, including a work stoppage for three hours at the day shift’s end and the same period of time at the night shift’s beginning. Until 2019’s Amazon Prime Day, the company will have never faced a protest on a day with such projected high sales in the United States.
As of late, Amazon workers in the region have been very active in terms of protesting. Their activism has led to better work conditions and concessions for workers regarding religious observation. But, as demonstrated by the upcoming Prime Day strike, work conditions are still not what many feel they could be at Amazon.
If work conditions at Amazon warehouses include such high amounts of strain that lead to strikes like the one in Shakopee, perhaps Amazon might resolve to take a closer look at its requirements. The company is currently under massive political pressure from lawmakers like presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, who recently pushed for the game industry to unionize. In the meantime, workers may have to make their voices heard in demonstations like these if there is to be systemic change in Amazon warehouse operations.
Amazon Prime Day will take place July 15 to July 16.