Today, Amazon announced that it had reached an agreement with the majority of its workers in Spain to reduce the impact of a total strike planned for one hour per shift on one of the busiest online shopping days of the year, Cyber Monday. This event follows a full week of deals due to Black Friday.
To be precise, at least 20,000 Amazon Spain warehouse and delivery workers had been called to strike, demanding better wages and working conditions on the discount day known as Cyber Monday. This is another busy day of package deliveries, already boosted by Black Friday, and requiring additional warehouse efforts for the new wave of orders.
Despite the agreement, Amazon Spain will have to deal with at least 5,000 employees who will continue to protest. This means that they will stop working during the last hour of their shifts, considering the company’s proposal for better wage conditions insufficient. According to Douglas Harper, the leader of the Workers’ Commissions (CCOO), the largest union of the American retailer in Spain, negotiations with Amazon will continue to improve salaries and conditions in the local unit.
“The vast majority of our teams will continue to work as usual, and there will be no impact on our operations for our customers,” the company said in an emailed statement. “We are proud of the wages, benefits, and safer working conditions that will be provided to our employees in Spain,” Amazon added in its official statement.
Amazon protests are not focused solely on the Iberian Peninsula. Logistics workers on both sides of the Atlantic have complained about working conditions. In particular, worker and activist groups across Europe protested against the American e-commerce giant this past Friday, the same day as the acclaimed Black Friday. While Amazon and other retailers in the US were boosting sales, groups from the UK, Germany, France, and Italy attempted to disrupt the company’s operations.
Despite this, Amazon said that Black Friday order deliveries would be reliable and punctual. These strikes are not new; we’ve seen them virtually every year, not only during Black Friday or Cyber Monday but also around the Three Kings’ Day Campaign or Prime Day. In 2018, Amazon Spain even requested the National Police force to prevent its employees from striking during Black Friday. Hence, it would not be surprising to discuss new strikes related to Amazon in the future.