Illinois Amazon Drivers Launch Strike, Demand Recognition

Amazon drivers organizing with Teamsters Local 705 in Skokie, IL launched a strike yesterday against unfair labor practices. Just days before, the 100 drivers marched on management to demand union recognition and filed with the NLRB for a vote to join Teamsters Local 705. The Skokie drivers are fighting for safe working conditions, fair wages, and better healthcare.

Local 705 is the first Teamsters local in the country to file for a union election with Amazon Delivery Service Provider (DSP) drivers. (California drivers who organized with Teamsters Local 396 were voluntarily recognized by DSP Battle Tested Strategies).

Amazon uses DSP subcontractors to dodge unionization and avoid responsibility for drivers’ working conditions. The Skokie drivers work for a DSP called Four Star Express Delivery. But Amazon controls drivers’ wages, safety standards, uniforms, and discipline.

“Every Amazon driver knows who our true employer is,” said Luke Cianciotto, one of the striking Amazon drivers. “We wear their uniforms and drive their trucks. They decide whether we can be hired or fired. We make them their profits and we organized a union with the Teamsters for our fair share.” 

Amazon workers in New York also marched on the boss this week. Workers staged coordinated marches on management across four locations in Staten Island, the Bronx, Queens, and the Hudson Valley demanding $25 an hour and Juneteenth as a paid holiday. 

Staten Island Amazon Labor Union members recently affiliated with the Teamsters and are fighting for a first contract. 

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