February 28, 2020
Labor unions call for US probe of Amazon tactics
Labor unions are urging regulators to investigate whether US tech giant Amazon is abusing its dominance in online retail, cloud computing and logistics.
In a petition filed Thursday with the Federal Trade Commission, the International Brotherhood of Teamsters and other labor groups claiming to represent a total of 5.3 million workers accused Amazon of anticompetitive practices.
"The company's dominance allows it to squeeze profit from and reduce choice among workers, consumers, merchants and competitors," read a copy of the 28-page petition available online.
Amazon did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
The petition urged the FTC to look into how Amazon is controlling prices at its e-commerce and cloud services platforms and whether it is using data it gathers to get an edge in the market.
The unions also wanted the FTC to investigate whether the Seattle-based company is using its clout to push down wages for its workers and in labor markets in general.
The petition urged "competition authorities like the Federal Trade Commission to protect workers from the unbridled market power of increasingly large and concentrated employers."
Earlier this month, one of Britain's biggest trade unions demanded a parliamentary inquiry into hundreds of injuries reported at Amazon warehouses.
The GMB said its investigation showed 622 "serious injuries or near misses" reported to the UK work safety regulator between the 2016/17 and 2018/19 fiscal years.
Amazon claimed the findings "paint a false picture of what it's like to work for Amazon."
© 2020 AFP