Whole Foods workers begin attempt to unionize

Whole Foods workers begin attempt to unionize
© Getty Images

Whole Foods employees are pushing to unionize following layoffs and lower wages since Amazon acquired the company last year.

A group of employees sent a mass email to most stores urging them to support the unionization effort, The Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

“It is time to hold [CEO] John Mackey accountable in supporting his team members,” they wrote in their letter obtained by the New Food Economy. “It is not acceptable to layoff dedicated team members with meager severance packages, no health insurance and then merely offer the opportunity to re-apply for other positions at a much lower wage.”

The workers attacked a policy change that occurred when Amazon took over that took away access to stock options for full-time team members who logged over 6,000 service hours. Now only store management and those at Whole Foods home office have access to this, according to the letter.

The employees’ demands include a $15 minimum wage, 401k matching, paid maternity leave, lower health insurance deductibles and equal profit sharing, among others.

Amazon workers in Europe previously held strikes on Prime Day to demand better conditions, including improved job safety measures.

Amazon and Whole Foods have contested allegations that they don’t treat their workers fairly.

“We offer competitive wages and benefits and are committed to the growth and success of our team members,” a Whole Foods spokeswoman told the Journal.

On Wednesday, Sen. Bernie SandersBernie SandersSanders calls out Manchin, Sinema ahead of filibuster showdown Hispanic Caucus lawmaker won't attend meeting with VP Harris's new aide The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - Democrats see victory in a voting rights defeat MORE (I-Vt.) fired the latest shot in his feud with Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, introducing a bill that would charge large companies for the government welfare benefits that support their-low wage workers. The Stop Bad Employers by Zeroing Out Subsidies Act, or Stop BEZOS Act, came in response to reports that a significant portion of Amazon employees are on food stamps.