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Today as a result of your help, we have won a major victory for American workers.

This morning, after a long campaign, Jeff Bezos of Amazon announced that the company would raise its minimum wage for all United States employees to $15 an hour — a move that will impact more than 350,000 full-time, part-time and temporary workers.

I want to thank the Amazon workers who worked with us on this campaign and the more than 100,000 of you who signed a petition demanding that Mr. Bezos do exactly what he announced today. This is what happens when we stand up and fight for justice together.

I also want to give credit where credit is due, and that is to applaud Jeff Bezos for his decision today. It is no secret that I have been a harsh critic of the wage and employment practices of Amazon and Mr. Bezos. Today he did the right thing. And the decision could very well be a shot heard around the world because there is no reason why other profitable corporations should not follow his lead.

The time is now for Walmart, McDonald’s and the fast food industry, the airline industry, and the retail industry in general to start paying their workers a living wage — at least $15 per hour. The American people are tired of having to subsidize profitable corporations who pay their workers wages that are so low that many of them are forced to go on food stamps, Medicaid, subsidized housing and other federal programs. That has got to change, and Mr. Bezos’ decision today is a major step forward in that direction.

When I talk about the political revolution — people standing up in their communities and at their workplace and fighting for change — I mean exactly what the Amazon workers and people everywhere did to achieve this victory.

But this fight is far from over because it is not just Amazon workers who deserve a $15 minimum wage. No worker in America should be forced to live in poverty.

I am more convinced than ever after this morning’s news that if we continue to fight for each other — for economic, social, racial and environmental justice — we will win.

In solidarity,

Bernie Sanders. Senator from VT, USA

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3 Comments

  1. Pingback: News Letter – Contre-courants – DE LA GRANDE VADROUILLE A LA LONGUE MARGE

  2. It is not all what it seems

    Amazon has now slashed benefits for UK warehouse workers, offsetting at least half of a big pay rise it announced. The removal of employee share and incentive schemes could cost thousands of workers £1,500 in a single year, according to the GMB union, which accused the online retailer of imposing “a stealth tax on its own wage increase”.

    The retailer’s warehouse workers currently receive one Amazon share, worth $1,961 (£1,508), at the end of every year they work at the company, and an additional share once every five years. If they hold on to the shares for two years, they can cash them in tax-free, according to the GMB. The loss of that payout would be equivalent to roughly half the £3,120 rise in pay promised to the average Amazon warehouse worker outside London. These workers currently earn about £17,000.

    Nor will staff will be eligible for cash bonuses they can currently earn if they meet productivity and attendance targets over the peak Christmas trading period.

    Tim Roache, the GMB’s general secretary, said Amazon had not said “a dicky bird about cutting staff benefits” when the new hourly pay rates were announced. Roache added: “This is a basically a stealth tax by the employer on its own wage increase – a clear case of robbing Peter to pay Paul. “If Jeff Bezos – the richest man in the world – really wants to give hardworking staff a pay rise, he should let them keep their share options as well as increasing their hourly rate.”

    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/oct/03/amazon-offsetting-pay-rise-by-removing-bonuses-union-says

    • Sally Dugman says:

      Thanks for your commentary. I appreciate it and plan to send it to Sen. Sanders, Sen Warren, Sen Leahy, Congressman McGovern and others with whom I regularly communicate.

      In my state of MA, USA — the minimum wage is $14/hr and raises every fiscal year. This is no accident since we hire our local, state and federal government leaders (our public servants) to follow our dictates and if they do not do so, we replace them.

      We also have learned to fight for our rights.. If they do not follow our bidding, you should see us rabble-rouse. … My sister and I learned to start being little fighters when we were children. We always were standing up for social justice and environmental issues since we had many Quaker and other friends, such as Jewish Freedom Riders, who were role models for us. And our parents, Quaker pacifists, supported our efforts and trained us to get better and better at the efforts that we each undertook in our own individual ways. (I can guarantee that even young children can find satisfaction in trying to improve conditions for a community, other individuals who are less fortunate and the natural world.)

      The fact is that if people want change regardless of the issue, they have to get off of their rumps and not expect other citizens or government leaders to provide for them. ,,, Nothing will be ceded in terms of power, money, control without an effort much of the time and the effort context (whether wage, climate change mitigation for one’s community, homelessness, starvation, pollution, etc.) doesn’t matter.

      Rising up in unison to demand change does. This should be amply clear — i.e., that apathy, passivity, expectation that OTHERS will take care of a problem doesn’t cut the grade. … Howard Zinn explains it amply that we all have to rise:

      A People’s History of the United States – History Is A Weapon
      https://www.historyisaweapon.com/zinnapeopleshistory.html

      Presented by History Is A Weapon. … Slavery Without Submission, Emancipation Without Freedom … Of all the people who took us up on it, no one collected.
      ‎The Empire and the People · ‎A People’s War? · ‎History Is A Weapon’s response

      PDF]A People’s History of the United States, 1492-Present – MV Lindsey
      https://mvlindsey.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/peoples-history-zinn-1980.pdf
      by H Zinn – ‎Cited by 5347 – ‎Related articles
      A People’s History of the United States, 1492-Present. By Howard Zinn ….. easy acceptance of atrocities as a deplorable but necessary price to pay for progress. (Hiroshima and …. It also engaged in (let us not overlook this) the ritual killing.
      [PDF]a peoples history – United Diversity – Library
      library.uniteddiversity.coop/…/Howard_Zinn-A_peoples_history_of_the_United_Stat…

      A People’s History of the United States … All rights reserved; no part of this publication may be ….. ties as a deplorable but necessary price to pay for progress (Hiroshima …. It also engaged in (let us not overlook this) the ritual killing of.