Fifty MEPs from the progressive arc – Socialists, Greens and from the unitary left – have sent a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos to ask if his company is spying on political leaders and union leaders.
Amazon removes two job offers to monitor “union threats”
MEPs recall that “Amazon published two job offers requesting ‘intelligence analysts’, with the role of monitoring various’ threats’ perceived by Amazon, including union work. These words appear three times in the middle of other categories such as’ hate groups’, ‘terrorism’ and ‘hostile political leaders’, putting them on the same level. ”
“We wonder with great concern”, write the MEPs in a letter promoted by the French MEP Leïla Chaibi, “about their intentions: does Amazon’s surveillance intentionally target trade unionists, Amazon workers, as well as political representatives? (including ourselves) who could possibly express criticism of his activities? ”
As a result of the commotion, Amazon removed both offers job, explaining that the job description was not correct. ‘How can these job offers be published?’ MEPs ask themselves: ‘There are increasing alerts about your company’s anti-union policy. Recently, a group of Amazon employees was fired in the United States because they organized a meeting with other employees for voicing their complaints about their working conditions as the Covid-19 pandemic spread around the world. ”
MEPs ask Bezos for the definition of “hostile political leaders” included in job offers. “Who do you mean? Has Amazon already spied on members of the European Parliament? Did it intend to? We represent countries where democracy and freedom of expression cannot be challenged by any company, not even Amazon. We are its guarantors. The exponential growth of Amazon’s profits since the beginning of the global pandemic does not allow it to exonerate itself from respecting fundamental legal principles. ”
“We are concerned that trade unions, as well as local, national or European elected representatives, will be affected by this ‘threat surveillance’, which aims to suppress collective action and union organizing,” the MEPs insist: “We hope that His response clears our concerns about union rights and political freedoms generated by these recent job openings for intelligence analysts at Amazon. ”
Among the signatories are the Spanish Idoia Villanueva Ruiz (Podemos, GUE / NGL), Sira Rego (IU, GUE / NGL), Manu Pineda (IU, GUE / NGL), María Eugenia Rodríguez Palop (Podemos, GUE / NGL) , Ernest Urtasun (Catalunya en Comú, Greens / EFA), Diana Riba i Giner (ERC, Greens / EFA), and Miguel Urbán Crespo (Anticapitalistas, GUE / NGL).