Amazon workers in Bessemer, Alabama, have voted during a historic poll to decide whether or not they want to be represented by the Retail, Wholesale, and emporium Union.

The results are not expected until next week – but if they say yes, it will become Amazon’s first US union.

Amazon argues its wages and benefits are industry-beating and has gone into battle to persuade workers to vote no.

Most agree the result could have major implications for US labor laws.

Peter Romer-Friedman, principal of firm Gupta Wessler PLLC, said: “The key question in America at the instant is are we getting to have fair treatment of workers within the businesses that will dominate our future?

“There are going to be ramifications for the important economy but also tech firms.

“The concept that workers get a seat at the table may be a radical concept for people in Silicon Valley.”

In the US, Amazon has 800 facilities staffed by 950,000 full- and part-time workers – and it should be said many don’t feel the necessity to hitch a union.

And for those who do, this is not primarily a wage issue Amazon pays workers an average of $15 (£11) an hour, plus benefits.

But most agree conditions in its warehouses can be hard – the job is very demanding and lots of workers complain of back pain or other physical niggles as a result of working long hours, often standing within the same position.

Others mention the mental-health toll of repeated tasks or feeling like they’re a cog during a very big machine that doesn’t always hear their problems.

And there are tons of things workers feel they are doing not have control of, like shift patterns, time off, leave, and being fired.

One of the foremost controversial features is the day off-task (TOT).

When a worker is clocked in, Amazon’s computing system calculates which hours of a shift are on or off task, supported whether or not an item is scanned.

And some say they feel dehumanized by technology watching their every move.

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