Workers to strike on Black Friday at Amazon's Coventry warehouse

More than 1,000 workers at Amazon’s warehouse in Coventry have announced plans to strike for four days in November, including on Black Friday.

The strikes are set to take place on 7, 8 and 9 November, and on 24 November, with the latter representing the holiday shopping event which still remains a major date in Amazon’s calendar despite pushes towards its own Prime Day events.

The GMB Union called on the company to "urgently reconsider its priorities" and said that a planned pay rise announced this week was “little comfort to the thousands of Amazon workers facing poverty pay, unsafe working conditions and workplace surveillance”.

Amazon this week announced that it would spend £170 million on two tranches of pay rises for frontline operations staff in the UK over the next six months. The company said that minimum starting pay for its workforce of 75,000 in the country would increase by £1 an hour to £11.80-12.50 depending on the location from 15 October. The next pay rise will come in April 2024, increasing to between £12.30-13.00.

The union said that the Coventry warehouse had lost nearly 30 days to industrial action. The first strikes took place in January, after workers at the site complained of being treated "like robots".

In a statement, GMB organiser Rachel Fagen said: “This is our members’ response to the failure of Amazon bosses to listen. This is an unprecedented and historic moment with low-paid workers taking on one of the world’s most powerful corporations.

“Coventry is the beating heart of Amazon’s distribution network; strike action here on Black Friday will ripple throughout the company’s UK logistics. As Black Friday looms, Amazon must urgently reconsider their priorities or risk strike action causing widespread disruption to customers and the public.”

In comments to The Guardian, Amazon UK country manager, John Boumphrey, said that the company offers “competitive wages and benefits, as well as fantastic opportunities for career development, all in a safe and modern work environment”.

    Share Story:

Recent Stories

The Very Group
The Very Group transformed range and assortment planning using Board.

Watch the full video

Smarter merchandise planning across the retail value chain
In this webinar, Matt Hopkins, Head of Retail Solutions, Board, Catherine Tooke, SVP Product & Planning, Sweaty Betty, and Subir Gupta, Managing Principal, Thought Provoking Consulting join Retail Systems Editor Jonathan Easton to discuss the findings of the recent Retail Systems report The Merchandise Planning Challenge: How are retailers harnessing technology to optimise planning and retain customers? and examine the innovations that are improving retail planning.