Amazon challenging certification of union for workers at Quebec warehouse

Online retailer Amazon is challenging the certification of a union representing about 200 employees at a Montreal-area warehouse.

The American company says the process by which employees unionized was unlawful because it involved workers signing union cards instead of voting in a secret ballot.

Amazon lawyer Frédéric Massé told a Quebec labour tribunal today that the absence of a secret ballot violated workers’ right to freedom of association.

The company has also filed for the union’s certification to be revoked entirely.

Amazon’s applications have not been debated yet on their merits, and the hearing involved whether the company was an interested party in some of the matters it is bringing before the tribunal.

For example, Amélie Bellerose, a lawyer for the Quebec government, argued that it was the employees or their union, not the employer, who could contest whether the workers’ rights were violated.

Administrative judge Irène Zaïkoff took the case under advisement, saying she would deliver a decision as soon as possible.