Glenn Spencer Glenn Spencer
Senior Vice President, Employment Policy Division, U.S. Chamber of Commerce


July 20, 2023


On July 12, the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) filed a complaint against Amazon for allegedly refusing to bargain with workers at its JFK-8 facility on Staten Island. In a contentious election, workers at JFK-8 had voted in favor of unionization in 2022. 

However, Amazon has disputed several aspects of the election, including conduct by both the NLRB itself and the Amazon Labor Union (ALU). Litigation on these issues is still underway, making the decision by the NLRB to file a complaint seem a bit premature. Should Amazon prevail, there would be no union with which to bargain.

Making matters worse, the day before the NLRB filed its complaint, 40 Amazon workers filed a lawsuit against the leaders of the ALU claiming that union leaders are engaging in undemocratic practices. As a news report in BNA put it, the lawsuit is “raising questions about the group’s ability to achieve a first contract with the e-commerce giant.” Given this apparent internal turmoil at ALU, the NLRB’s complaint once again seems ill-timed. 

There will undoubtedly be more to come on both the NLRB’s complaint and the ALU litigation. For now, however, it seems the NLRB has found yet another way to generate controversy. 

About the authors

Glenn Spencer

Glenn Spencer

Spencer oversees the Chamber’s work on immigration, retirement security, traditional labor relations, human trafficking, wage hour and worker safety issues, EEOC matters, and state labor and employment law.

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