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Amazon Workers at KCVG Airhub Continue Unionization Struggle

Photo Credit: @AmazonUnionKCVG on Twitter/X

Workers at Amazon’s KCVG Airhub have been pressured by the bosses against unionization. Jordan Quinn, an employee for the air hub at the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport, says that it’s nonsensical how a multinational corporation, such as Amazon, treats its employees.

“When people experience how hard we have to work, and how we don’t get paid enough, how we don’t get enough time off, and how we don’t get enough benefits, then Amazon will try and find a way to fire people for any reason,” Quinn said.

The unionization drive kicked off in May and Quinn joined the efforts. The group is calling for a $30 an hour starting wage (currently $21 an hour), 180 hours of paid time off, representation at disciplinary meetings, safer working conditions, and better translation services for those that speak English as their second language, as explained by the union organizer, Marcio Rodriguez.

“They refuse to give them training in their language, translation for HR in their language, or any type of translation with HR disciplinary matters,” Rodriguez said. “We need to communicate in this job. It’s very dangerous. We’re dealing with airplanes. We’re loading these cans that weigh thousands of pounds, where if you mis-communicate one thing, you could get crushed by it, get hurt or even killed. There’s no reason. Somebody’s going to get hurt. These people aren’t getting trained properly, and they’re going to hurt their coworkers, or they’re going to hurt themselves. And nobody comes to work to get hurt.”

In order to file for union elections, they need a minimum 30% of the workforce to sign union cards. Quinn said that over 1,000 employees have signed up.

Quinn said: “We know about co-workers getting intimidated by management, both at the union tables and on the floor. They’ve just been freaking out, to be honest. And I think we have them scared. Because they know we have momentum on our side.”

Management has ramped up its retaliation in recent months, up to and including having their jobs threatened for setting up union tables.

“It’s just ridiculous, blatant intimidation,” Quinn said. “Every worker has the right to protect a concerted activity under section seven of the national labor relations act. They’re violating that law. They know that they’re violating it. But Amazon’s not willing to put the law above crushing a union. Because they know if we get a union, they’re going to have to pay us more, and treat us better. That’s why they’re fighting so hard.”

Earlier this month, about 25 employees marched on the boss to deliver an unfair labor practice charge filed with the National Labor Relations Board against site leadership. It must be noted that due to the new rules approved by the NLRB in August, if the NLRB rules in favor of the workers, they will automatically win union representation.

Quinn said management told workers they’d speak to them individually, but not as a group. This simply furthers their attempts to divide the workers and break the unionization drive.

He said he’s confident the group will eventually prevail in establishing a union to address those concerns. In the meantime, they’ll keep coming to work and organizing.

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