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A Prime Day Surprise: Amazon Strikes Continue to Spread Across Europe

July 17, 2018, 11:03 AM UTC

It’s Christmas in July for Amazon, but during its 36-hour Prime Day promotion, warehouse workers across Europe are striking.

Chief executive Jeff Bezos has repeatedly come under fire for the working conditions in his company’s warehouses. Nearly 1,800 workers in Spain were striking as of Monday, according to labor activists there.

In Germany, hundreds of workers in six locations across the country were striking today and tomorrow. Amazon employs a total about 16,000 workers in its German warehouses and has refused since 2013 to enter collective wage negotiations with labor union Verdi.

“The message is clear—while the online giant gets rich, it is saving money on the health of its workers,” said Verdi spokeswoman Stefanie Nutzenberger in a statement.

In Poland, the call was work-to-rule, with Amazon employees reporting to their jobs but doing the bare minimum of work required. A spokesperson in Poland defended Amazon (AMZN), saying the company had invested €15 billion ($17.6 billion) and created more than 65,000 jobs in Europe.

Despite website crashes and labor disputes, Prime Day was expected to bring in $3.4 billion for Amazon this year, up 40% from last year, per Coresight Research.