Emily Cunningham and Maren Costa were terminated last April after raising concerns about Amazon’s treatment with warehouse workers during the coronavirus epidemic.
Prosecutors at the National Labor Relations Board found that Amazon.com Inc. fired two high-profile internal critics last year. Violated labor laws.
It ended last April after Emily Cunningham and Maren Costa expressed concern about Amazon’s treatment with warehouse workers during the epidemic.
Their dismissal is in favor of a change in their workplace, and the NLRB company plans to file a complaint accusing Amazon of unfair labor if the lawsuit is not settled, according to a letter sent to the pair by the NLRB’s attorney with the Seattle regional office.
“We support the right of every employee to criticize their employer’s working conditions, but this does not bring blanket impunity against our internal policies, all of which are legal,” Jackie Anderson, a spokeswoman for the email, said in an email statement. “We have dismissed these employees not for speaking openly about working conditions, safety or sustainability, but for repeated internal policy violations.”
The New York Times reported the board’s investigation earlier Monday. “This is a moral victory and truly proves that we are on the right side of history and the right side of law,” Cunningham told the newspaper.
Both user-experience designers Cunningham and Costa were among the leaders of a working group that pushed Amazon to do more to tackle climate change.
Last year, as the coronavirus began to spread, they tried to raise the demand of their group of workers who packed and operated goods in the company’s warehouses. The pair say the warehouse workers and technicians were fired shortly after their colleagues were invited to attend the connecting virtual event.
“That’s what stopped them,” Costa said in an interview last year.
It was a series of employee protests at the company last year to protest the allegation that some Amazon employees called in sick.
The allegations are among dozens of lawsuits filed against Amazon with U.S. labor regulators since the epidemic began.
A spokesman for the board said the NLRB, which normally investigates such claims in the country’s regional offices, was assessing whether the similarities in the lawsuit against Amazon were worthy of a unified response and approach.
When regional NLRB offices discover that an agency has broken the law and is unable to secure a settlement, they complain in favor of the agency’s general counsel, which is heard by administrative law judges.
The judgment of these judges can then be appealed to the NLRB’s authenticated members in Washington and from there to federal court.