UK Amazon warehouse workers are balloted for strike action over pay

Amazon UK is set to create 1,500 apprenticeships in Britain this year. The expansion of the giant online retailer’s programme includes more than 200 degree-level

Amazon workers at a Coventry warehouse will become the first in the UK to take part in a formal strike ballot.

Hundreds of workers will today begin voting on whether to walk out in anger over the company’s 35 pence per hour pay offer.

The ballot closes on 19 October, with any industrial action likely to take place in November.

Amazon workers across the UK have staged informal protests in anger at a three per cent pay offer from the company.

Last September, Amazon reported paying £492m in tax the previous year – despite UK revenue soaring to £20.6billion in the pandemic.

Amanda Gearing, GMB Senior Organiser, said the workers were “making history”.

“They’re being offered 35p an hour during the worst cost of living crisis in a generation – and that’s from a company worth more than £1 trillion. Understandably, they are furious,” she said.  “Amazon can afford to do better. It’s not too late to avoid strike action; get round the table with GMB to improve the pay and conditions of workers.”

Last month, we reported that around 450 workers at a Tilbury warehouse went on a two-night strike after Amazon responded to demands for a pay increase with a 35p per hour raise.

Members of the union GMB have lobbied for a £2 per hour increase as the cost-of-living crisis continues to bite into workers’ pockets.

An Amazon spokesperson said:“Starting pay for Amazon employees has increased to a minimum of between £10.50 and £11.45 per hour, depending on location. This represents a 29 percent increase in the minimum hourly wage paid to Amazon associates since 2018.

On top of this, employees are offered a comprehensive benefits package that includes private medical insurance, life assurance, income protection, subsidised meals, an employee discount and more, which combined are worth thousands of pounds annually, as well as a company pension plan.”

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UK Amazon warehouse workers are balloted for strike action over pay