The crowd was picketing to support workers at the Shakopee, Minnesota warehouse (or "fulfillment center"), who timed their strike to coincide with "Prime Day", one of the company's key online sales events. And while the E-commerce giant has nearly always defended itself strongly against such charges, it finds itself in a crisis situation with thousands of its workers launching a massive protest in the United States and in many countries across Europe.
According to CNN Business, Amazon raised starting wages to $15 an hour for all USA employees past year, but workers say they are still not treated with respect; further, they say that they are subjected to risky conditions, unfair scheduling, and "impossible demands", with conditions not being equitable across factories.
She's been an Amazon employee for a year and seven months.
Other retailers have introduced sales to compete against Prime Day.
Prime Day is being promoted on Amazon's website as a "two-day parade of epic deals", when monthly subscribers to the company's Prime service can shop for discounted items and expect fast home delivery.
Workers in Poland - who have been in an ongoing struggle with management since May - have said they will begin protests on July 15 and will not cease until they reach a collective agreement with the company. While worker advocates, including presidential hopeful Bernie Sanders, are celebrating the activism, Amazon criticized unions for "conjuring misinformation to work in their favor".
"We're in a hyper competitive environment, retail has always been that way", said Cem Sibay, Amazon Prime's vice president.
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The union compared Amazon's warehouse conditions to those overseen by 19th century mill owners, and claimed the company's Rugeley site is one of the most risky places to work in Britain.
According to CNBC, the fulfillment center workers started walking out at 3 p.m. ET Monday and will strike for a six-hour period. "In order to show that they won't wait around any longer in the face of these injustices, workers chose to go on strike on Prime Day to show they are serious about achieving a voice on the job to win the things families in Minnesota and across the country deserve".
Workers in Germany walked out early Monday, with Orhan Akman, a spokesman for labour union Verdi, telling AFP: "Well over 2,000 took part, that is more than we expected".
In a statement, Amazon said events like Prime Day have invited critics to "raise awareness for their cause".
So maybe give it a second thought before you use Amazon or any of its subsidiary companies today.
Productivity quotas for workers are estimated around 600 packages per hour, no matter the size of the items. Prime Day deliveries weren't affected, however. Currently, around 1,500 employees work at the Shakopee facility.
"We're not calling for economic damage for Amazon", he said. The processes that allow the company to ship you basically anything you want for the lowest price possible in a day or two are incredibly inefficient and borderline inhumane.