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Union loses bid to organize second New York City Amazon facility

Union loses bid to organize second New York City Amazon facility
Workers at a sorting facility in Staten Island, New York, rejected a unionization bid by the Amazon Labor Union. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

May 2 (UPI) -- An upstart labor union that successfully organized an Amazon.com facility in New York City last month has failed to repeat that win at another nearby workplace, U.S. officials announced Monday.

Workers at the LDJ5 Amazon sorting facility in Staten Island voted against the Amazon Labor Union's proposal 618-380, according to a count conducted by the National Labor Relations Board's Brooklyn office.

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The result after a week-long voting period was a setback for the newly established ALU, which on April 1 pulled off a historic win at the much larger JFK8 Staten Island fulfillment center -- the first unionization of an Amazon warehouse in the United States.

The online retailing giant said it is "glad that our team at LDJ5 were able to have their voices heard" in a statement issued to CNN. "We look forward to continuing to work directly together as we strive to make every day better for our employees."

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"The count has finished. The election has concluded without the union being recognized at LDJ5 -- sortation center on Staten Island," the ALU said in a Twitter post. "The organizing will continue at this facility and beyond. The fight has just begun."

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The failed bid came despite a push by such notable pro-union lawmakers as Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., and Rep. Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., who attended a rally at the facility before the start of voting.

Both took aim at Amazon co-founder and executive chairman Jeff Bezos, who is fighting to have the results of the JFK8 election overturned.

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"I don't know how, when you're worth $170 billion, you are spending money trying to break a union, so that workers can have decent wages, decent working conditions, decent healthcare, decent housing," Sanders said, adding, "How much money does Bezos and the other billionaires need?"

Amazon's case challenging the first vote has been handed off from the NLRB's Brooklyn office to the regional office in Phoenix after the company requested a transfer.

Amazon complained in its challenge that the New York office engaged in unfair behavior during the election, calling into question its "neutral stance."

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