PRESIDENT Joe Biden took a shot at Amazon.com, Inc. over its battles with employees seeking to unionize.
Speaking to members of North America’s Building Trades Unions in Washington on Wednesday, Biden touted his administration’s efforts to make it easier for workers to form labor unions.
“By the way, Amazon, here we come,” the president said, drawing applause. “Watch. Watch.”
The comments come on the heels of a victory for Staten Island, New York warehouse workers who formed a union in the face of opposition from Amazon. A second vote is expected at another Amazon warehouse in Staten Island, and organizers are eying union pushes at more of the company’s facilities in the region.
The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union is attempting to win another election at an Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama after losing a vote last year.
Biden said his White House is intent on empowering organizing workers “to make sure the choice to join a union belongs to workers alone.”
“That’s what unions are about — providing dignity and respect for people who bust their neck,” Biden said.
The president has shown antipathy toward employers perceived as anti-union, most notably in his relationship with Tesla, Inc. Biden has seldom mentioned the company and has not visited any of its factories, even while celebrating efforts by Ford Motor Co. and General Motors Co. to launch electric models.
The snubs have irked Tesla co-founder Elon Musk.
But recently, Musk hosted Labor Secretary Marty Walsh for a tour of Tesla’s new factory in Austin, Texas. Walsh said in an interview with Yahoo Finance Live that Musk told him he’s not opposed to Tesla employees seeking to form a union, if they want. — Bloomberg