500 of the 3000 employees at the distribution centre of Amazon in German city Bad Hersfeld have gone on strike to strengthen their demands for better pay and better working conditions, says several German media. According to the union ver.di, employees of Amazon in Leipzig are also in unrest.
More pay and benefits
The employees of Amazon in Germany are very dissatisfied: they demand a minimum wage of 10.66 euro per hour, a better schedule, a bonus for night shifts and a Christmas bonus. It was the first time German Amazon employees took this kind of action, said ver.di spokesman Heiner Reimann.
It was ver.di that instigated the strike, after several attempts to come to an agreement with the American retailer failed. Ver.di also visited employees at Amazon Leipzig and found comparable circumstances: over ninety percent of employees want to go out in the streets to protest. Whether the strike will really happen, is not certain yet. It is however sure that deliveries will suffer some delays.
Long history of intimidation
It is not the first time this year Amazon is embarrassed in Germany: earlier this year German public TV-station aired a report which showed that warehouse employees were intimidated by neo-Nazi security company HESS.
After the report Amazon fired the militaristic guards immediately, but the damage had been done. The reputation of Amazon as an employer has been – mildly put – damaged and even the right-wing German government demanded an investigation.