Amazon’s German Workers Plan Surprise Strike in 2014

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As Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) workers in Germany continue their strikes during the busiest retail season, union leaders say there’ll more where that came from in 2014. Representatives from Germany’s Verdi union told Reuters that surprise strikes were on the agenda for the year ahead in an effort to get Amazon to increase distribution workers’ pay.

The employees working for Amazon in Germany, the retailer’s second biggest market, say they should be considered retail employees rather than logistics employees, who receive lower pay according to industry standards. The staged work shutdowns were timed for the busiest weeks of December holiday shopping online — beginning on the company’s busiest day of the year, December 16 — but Amazon said the commitment of its workforce as a whole would be enough to power the company through the strike.

“The overwhelming majority of our workers are fully committed, so all packages are making it in time for the holiday,” an Amazon rep said in a statement to Reuters. Verdi union officials threatened and announced the current strike, set to end on December 21, but they said they would use the element of surprise in 2014.

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