A group of Whole Foods workers is trying to unionize the company’s workforce of more than 85,000.
The drive is being led by members of the company’s cross regional committee who say they are concerned about the direction Whole Foods is taking and that they don’t want to see Amazon remake the retail landscape without valuing its team members.
Demands include a $15 minimum wage, paid maternity leave and lower health insurance deductibles.
In a letter to Whole Foods employees, the workers claim that they fear continuing layoffs as Amazon trims the labour force and turns increasingly to new technologies and labour models.
A week after the call to unionize, Whole Foods promised to improve working conditions with new programs starting next year. Whole Foods CEO and co-founder John Mackey noted employee concern over the scaling back of employee stock options after Amazon acquired the company, and said that Whole Foods will return to the pre-acquisition program.
The full letter from the Whole Foods cross regional committee can be viewed in this Tech Crunch report.