Weeks after a historic victory for Amazon union organizers in Staten Island, a second location in the borough has soundly defeated plans to follow suit. The “no” vote scored a decisive victory this time out, at 618 to 380. In all, 998 of the 1,633 eligible workers cast a vote.
With only two voided ballots, the results appear far more straightforward than the recent Bessemer, Alabama re-vote, though the National Labor Relations Board still needs to officially sign off. Voting took place via secret ballot for four days last week. The relatively small number of ballots meant the board was able to complete counting in a matter of hours.
The news comes as a major blow to union efforts, which had a good deal of wind in their sales following last month’s victory. Last weekend, the site saw visits from leading progressive politicians, including Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez. Christian Smalls, the fired Amazon worker who led Staten Island organizing efforts, noted the setback on Twitter.
“Despite todays outcome I’m proud of the worker/organizers of LDJ5 they had a tougher challenge after our victory at JFK8,” Smalls wrote on Twitter. Our leads should be extremely proud to have given their coworkers a right to join a Union [Amazon Labor] will continue to organize and so should all of you.”
Amazon, which had previously suggested the NLRB exercised undue influence in the JFK8 vote, savored today’s victory. “We’re glad that our team at LDJ5 were able to have their voices heard,” spokesperson Kelly Nantel told TechCrunch. “We look forward to continuing to work directly together as we strive to make every day better for our employees.”
For its part, the worker-led Amazon Labor Union promised more organizing, writing, “The organizing will continue at this facility and beyond. The fight has just begun.”