A National Labor Relations Board official has recommended that Amazon’s objections to a successful unionization vote at one of its Staten Island warehouses be rejected, and that the union be certified, officials said on Thursday.
Workers at the Staten Island warehouse known as JFK8 voted in favor of a union in a historic election in April. Soon after, Amazon sought to overturn the results, filing an objection with the NLRB claiming that organizers had used “objectionable, coercive, and misleading behavior,” to allure workers to vote “yes.”
Lisa Dunn, the hearing officer who presided over the proceedings in June, concluded that the union’s victory should be upheld and that the union be certified as bargaining representative, rejecting the objections in their entirety in the report, the NLRB said.
“While we are pleased with her findings, the Amazon workers in the ALU understand that this is just the beginning of a much longer fight,” ALU Communication Director Cassio Mendoza said in a statement. “Amazon’s abuse of the legal process is simply a stalling tactic that is meant to delay our negotiations and cause workers to lose faith in the process.”
ALU president Chris Smalls reacted to the report on Twitter, celebrating the findings.
“Today is a great day for Labor,” Smalls said. “The Hearing Officer of Region 28 has officially declared that all objections are dismissed and recommended certification!!! Once again we proven that our campaign was power!”
In a statement, a spokesperson for Amazon said the company stood behind its objection and would continue to pursue its options in court.
“While we’re still reviewing the decision, we strongly disagree with the conclusion and intend to appeal,” Amazon Spokesperson Kelly Nantel said. “As we showed throughout the hearing with dozens of witnesses and hundreds of pages of documents, both the NLRB and the ALU improperly influenced the outcome of the election and we don’t believe it represents what the majority of our team wants.”
The labor board will issue a formal ruling after considering the federal labor official’s recommendations. Amazon has until September 16th to file its objections to the report.