California Amazon Air Hub Workers Walk Out Over Working Conditions

A group of employees from the Amazon Air Hub in San Bernardino, California staged a walkout to protest for better salaries and working conditions.

In a statement published online by the Inland Empire Amazon Workers United (IEAWU), organizers said they had gathered more than 800 signatures for a petition requesting that Amazon’s base pay rate be increased from $17 to $22 per hour, citing the area’s growing rent and cost of living.

The IEAWU also highlighted that numerous workplaces still experience “unsafe heat conditions,” noting that the San Bernardino freight airport experienced temperatures of 95 degrees Fahrenheit (35 degrees Celcius) or more for twenty days last month.

“Working in the heat feels like you are suffocating. You need to take breaks and you can overheat really easily. They don’t make it easy to take breaks to allow your body to cool down,” said Amazon worker, Melissa Ojeda.

The IEAWU claimed that more than 150 workers allegedly took part in the organized walkout on Monday. Amazon, however, rejected the number, claiming that 74 employees took part in the protest.

By either metric, the protesters took up a small portion of the 1,500 workers at the San Bernardino Amazon Air facility.

“I would like this job to be long term. If workers are heard and there is a change, we can make it a good place to work,” said Daniel Rivera, an associate at the warehouse.

The Amazon Air facility is situated at the former Norton Air Force Base and currently runs an estimated 14 flights per day into and out of the facility. 


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