The news: An Amazon fulfillment center worker died Thursday after being found in the bathroom of a warehouse in Bessemer, Ala. Bloomberg first reported the news and said the worker collapsed at the facility, citing unnamed sources. Amazon said it was a personal medical incident and there were no known pre-existing conditions. The company is offering grief counseling and support for employees at the site.
Statement from Amazon: “We’re deeply saddened by the passing of a member of our team, and our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with his loved ones during this difficult time.” — Amazon spokesperson Maria Boschetti
Bessemer warehouse: The fulfillment center was the site of closely watched unionization effort last month. Amazon’s Bessemer warehouse workers eventually declined union representation by a large margin, with 1,798 employees against union representation and 738 in favor. The defeat ended what was the most serious effort to unionize a segment of the workforce in the 27-year-old company that employs 1.2 million people worldwide.
The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union filed formal objections, accusing Amazon of illegal and coercive activity in the weeks preceding the union’s unsuccessful campaign to organize warehouse workers.