Black Friday: protesters block Amazon warehouses in the UK

Environmental activists block Amazon warehouses across the UK in a bid to pressure the e-commerce giant on one of its busiest days of the year to improve working conditions for its employees and end business practices that harm the environment.

Members of Extinction Rebellion have targeted 13 Amazon fulfillment centers in the UK in an attempt to disrupt 50% of the company’s deliveries on Black Friday, which marks the unofficial start of the holiday shopping season.

Activists have blocked the entrance to the Amazon warehouse in Tilbury, east London, with an effigy of Amazon founder Jeff Bezos sitting on top of a rocket ship.

At Amazon’s distribution center in Dunfermline, Scotland, around 20 Extinction Rebellion members hung “Make Amazon Pay” banners near the road and chained themselves to each other, preventing trucks from entering and some from leaving.

The group demands that Amazon provide better working conditions, make clear environmental commitments and pay its fair share of taxes.

“The action aims to draw attention to Amazon’s business practices that exploit and destroy the environment, its disregard for workers’ rights in the name of profits, as well as the waste of Black Friday,” the group said.

Extinction Rebellion said the move was part of a larger international effort that is also targeting Amazon’s fulfillment centers in the United States, Germany and the Netherlands.

In Canada, the Canadian Union of Postal Workers and the Warehouse Workers Union Resource Center will join forces with Progressive International and an international coalition of workers, tech organizations, environmental activists and advocacy groups for a protest in Brampton, Ontario. Friday afternoon.

Amazon did not directly mention the protests in response to a request for comment, but said the company was taking its responsibilities “very seriously.”

“This includes our commitment to become carbon neutral by 2040, 10 years before the Paris Agreement, to offer excellent wages and benefits in a safe and modern work environment and to support tens of thousands of small businesses. Brits selling on our site, ”the company said.

Regina Anderson

"Extreme gamer. Food geek. Internet buff. Alcohol expert. Passionate music specialist. Beeraholic. Incurable coffee fan."

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