Amazon has been hit by yet another strike in Germany, as labour union Ver.di organised actions at distribution centres in Bad Hersfeld, Leipzig and Graben to get better working conditions for the employees.
Union and Amazon disagree over wages
It is yet another strike for Amazon in Germany in a period of a few months’ time - all aimed towards getting higher wages and decreased work pressure. The labour union feels Amazon is taking advantage of the employees.
However, director of operations Ralf Kleber claims that the employees are being paid in a correct fashion: “Everyone gets at least 9.55 euro per hour. On top of that are additional bonuses and a Christmas bonus. We also help build their retirement and we give them the option, for free, to use additional insurances.”
"People who have been with us for over two years get stock options, making them part owner of Amazon. That can result in a salary of 2,000 euro per month,” Kleber told the German paper Frankfurter Algemeine Zeitung.
“Ver.di wants to attract new members”
He is not surprised Ver.di is gunning for Amazon this year: “It makes sense, because the majority of our 9,000 German employees have not joined a union. Amazon is therefore a hotbed of potential members for Ver.di,” he divulged in the same interview.
Nevertheless, Amazon has been getting quite a bit of negative press, because of the tremendous pressure employees are under. A report from the British television shows how an undercover journalist had to pick up a new product every 33 seconds during his night shift.
(Translated by Gary Peeters)