Book industry professionals from around the country are declaring this Friday a Book Workers Day of Solidarity with Amazon employees in Bessemer, Alabama, whose fight for unionization continues to draw national attention.
Employees of more than two dozen publishers, along with over a dozen bookstores and a handful of literary agencies, signed a letter in support of the unionization effort. (Workers at Amazon’s Bessemer warehouse received ballots on unionization on Feb. 8, and those ballots are due to the National Labor Relations Board’s Alabama office by March 29.)
Several of those participating in the Day of Solidarity released individual statements in support of the effort and underscoring the importance of solidarity from the publishing industry.
“We in the book industry talk a lot about Amazon as a troublesome but insurmountable inconvenience while decrying its adverse effects on independent publishing and bookselling,” Daley Farr, editor at Coffee House Press, said in a statement. “But to truly transform our work and our industry in the ways we say we want to, we have to confront Amazon, not just as competition, but as a dangerous monopoly built on the abuse of the workers—and we must oppose dehumanizing and exploitative conditions for book workers everywhere.”