Hundreds of the American giant Amazon’s employees came out on strike for better wages and working conditions in Germany on Friday, the sales promotions day dubbed “Black Friday”.
The strike, called by the Verdi union, will continue until Tuesday, thereby disrupting work on Monday, which is another on-line sales promotion day.
“Several hundred” of the online sales giant’s employees went on strike on Friday, Verdi spokeswoman, Eva Voelpel, informed the AFP news agency.
According to her, the strike has hit Amazon distribution centres in Leipzig, Bad Hersfeld, Koblenz, Rheinberg, Werne and Graben.
“Their work cannot be paid at derisory amounts,” Verdi complained in a press release, demanding a collective labour agreement to guarantee “a decent wage and healthy, quality jobs.”
The union accuses Amazon of “depriving its staff of their basic rights” and employing them “under extreme pressure,” and “as a consequence, many employees go sick,” the union warned.
For its part, Amazon has minimised the strike’s impact, ensuring that orders will be delivered “on time.” The firm claims it offers salaries within the “top band of earnings for this kind of work,” “fringe benefits” and a review of “salaries every year.”
Most of its 13,000 employees in 13 logistics hubs across Germany will work “as normal” on Friday, Amazon stated.
The American company has been hit by endless strikes in Germany and other countries in recent years.
Last year, “Black Friday” was marked by work stoppages in Spain, Germany and Great Britain.