From Investors Activism to Employees Activism – The Amazon case

September 11, 2019
By CSE

The planned event will mark the first time in Amazon’s 25-year history that workers at the company’s headquarters have participated in a strike.

 

Over the past year, tech workers across the country have walked out to protest a wide range of issues such as Google employees on sexual harassment issues and WayFair staff on immigration, now it’s Amazon’s turn.

 

Over 900 Amazon employees have signed an internal petition pledging to walk out over their employer’s lack of action on climate change. The protest is part of a global general strike led by 16-year-old climate change activist Greta Thunberg taking place ahead of the United Nations Climate Action Summit on September 23.

 

Three Demands

  1. Stop donating to politicians and lobbying groups that deny the reality of climate change,
  2. Stop working with oil and gas companies to optimize fossil fuel extraction
  3. Achieve zero carbon emissions by 2030

 

The workers want it to stop using fossil fuels entirely. Converting fully to renewable energy is an ambitious goal, especially for a logistics company, but the employees joining the walkout say Amazon is the most ambitious company on the planet, and drastic action is necessary to end the climate crisis.

 

Amazon has previously set ambitious environmental goals but has yet to attain them. In 2014 just months after Greenpeace published a condemning report on the company’s energy usage Amazon pledged to run 100 percent of AWS on renewable energy sometime in the future. It’s so far only met half of its stated goal. Both Google and Apple already power their operations with 100 percent clean energy, and Facebook says it is not far behind.

 

The participants hope that even if a fraction of the roughly 45,000 people who work at Amazon’s headquarters join the walkout, the demonstration will force the company to take climate change more seriously. Ultimately, they also hope it will impact more than just their own employer.

 

“If Amazon stepped up to be a leader, imagine how many people would follow, we have one of the most trusted brands in the world. It would mean so much for our customers, the next generation, and to our peers.” Amazon employee says.

 

An important CSE strategy is to meet corporations where they are.  From construction to Silicon Valley (Workday, Netgear), CSE has developed meaningful relationships with both SMEs and large international corporations.  We’ve provided education on Sustainability to leading companies such as Google, T-Mobile, Sandia National Laboratories and other companies based in California and Washington.

 

Because of its leadership in sustainability, San Francisco is an ideal location for our Certified CSR-P TrainingOct. 15-16, 2019.  

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