NEW WESTMINSTER—Workers in Metro Vancouver could become the first employed by Amazon to enjoy the benefits of a union after Unifor announced plans to start a drive.
“Joining a union will ensure that workers at Amazon can flex their united strength and push this notoriously difficult employer to improve working conditions,” said Lana Payne, Unifor National President. “They took risks during COVID-19 to ensure millions of us could stay home and get key deliveries on time. It’s time they get the chance to benefit from a solid, enforceable collective agreement.”
U.S. activist and Amazon Labour Union (ALU) president Chris Smalls joined Unifor organizers at the launch event near “YVR3”, the fulfillment centre near Braid Skytrain Station in New Westminster. He emphasized the need to foster community and build meaningful connections between workers.
“The union shows the power of the people, bringing them together, helping them with their real concerns at work,” Smalls said. “Amazon can never do that. They’re in the business of exploiting workers for profit.”
Unifor Western Regional Director Gavin McGarrigle was present at the launch to support the organizing team.
“It’s time to turn things around in the warehouse industry, workers can do it together. The ALU already showed us what is possible at Amazon. It doesn’t matter how big your company is: workers everywhere deserve the benefits and protections of a union,” said McGarrigle.
Unifor is Canada’s largest union in the private sector, representing 315,000 workers in every major area of the economy. The union advocates for all working people and their rights, fights for equality and social justice in Canada and abroad, and strives to create progressive change for a better future.
For media inquiries or to arrange interviews via FaceTime, Zoom, or Skype please contact Unifor Communications Representative Ian Boyko at [email protected] or 778-903-6549 (cell).