The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) has accused Amazon of illegally firing an employee advocating for better working conditions.
Amazon has already made headlines for aggressively working against unionization efforts, even going so far as to hire Pinkertons to monitor employees suspected of organizing. At least six employees claim they were fired in the spring over their efforts to improve working conditions.
According to BuzzFeed News, however, the NLRB has found that one of those employees, Courtney Bowden, has a legitimate case. In fact, “the agency found merit in her allegations that Amazon threatened, suspended, and ultimately terminated her because she had been talking with coworkers at an Amazon warehouse in King of Prussia, Pennsylvania, about pay and other workplace issues, which is a legally protected activity.” At least one of those issues was providing sick pay for part-time employees.
The case will now go before an administrative law judge March 9, 2021. Given Amazon’s history, its recent actions and the NLRB’s findings, it seems likely the judge may find in Bowden’s favor.
Either way, this has not been a good week for Big Tech and employee relations.