Amazon.com (AMZN) is under a lot of pressure from activists(and not the Carl Icahn types) lately over Donald Trump and worker rights. Here is the latest from an email we received.
23% of Amazon.com Shareholders Call for Assessment of Worker Abuses, Human Rights Violations in Operation and Supply Chain
SEATTLE — Today 23% of shareholders of AMZN supported a call for the company to take stronger measures to address human rights violations in its operations and supply chain. This builds off a similar resolution last year that was supported by only 5% of Amazon.com shareholders.
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Filed jointly by four SumOfus members who are Amazon shareholders and presented by Lisa Lindsley of SumOfUs proxy resolution Item 4 calls on Amazon.com to “identify and analyze potential and actual human rights risk of Amazon’s entire operations and supply chain.”
In response to the vote, Lisa Lindsley representing SumOfUs.org, issued the following statement
“This is a great example of what individuals can do when we come together. Momentum is building around this issue at Amazon because four individual members of SumOfUs, who are also shareholders of Amazon, got the support of the global SumOfUs community and the attention of institutional investors. The world now knows about the abusive practices suffered by Amazon security officers at its headquarters.
“Amazon shareholders need to know about the risks associated with Amazon’s treatment of workers like disposable production inputs. Who wants to buy a Fire, Kindle or Echo product that may have been made with slave labor? Since Amazon can’t protect human rights at its headquarters, shareholders are understandably concerned that this lack of risk management will generate reputational risks that are bad for Amazon’s bottom line.”
The proposal was supported by proxy advisory firm ISS, which said: “Amazon could provide additional information regarding the policies the company has implemented to identify and assess human rights risks in its own operations and the relevant mechanisms it has implemented to ensure compliance with such policies. Such information would benefit shareholders, as it would allow them to better understand and assess how the company is managing any associated risks.”
VIEW THE SHAREHOLDER RESOLUTION HERE:
Activists from SumOfUs also delivered more than 104,930 signatures to Amazon.com executives at the shareholder meeting, calling on the global corporation to treat workers better and pay its share of taxes. The petition was also signed by over 18,000 direct and indirect Amazon shareholders, and nearly 73,000 Amazon customers.
From yesterday, here is what activists are calling for.
LOOK UP: Women’s Group Flies Plane Banner Over Amazon Shareholders Meeting Calling For Amazon to #DumpTrump
Amazon Shareholders Call on CEO Jeff Bezos to Stop the Sale of Trump Merchandise on the Amazon.com Marketplace
SEATTLE, WASHINGON — On Tuesday, May 17, as the 2016 annual Amazon shareholders meeting begins, UltraViolet Action, a national women’s advocacy organization, representing 1500 Amazon.com shareholders, has commissioned a plane to fly over the meeting at Fremont Studios with a banner reading, “Shareholders to Amazon: #DumpTrump.”
WHERE: Amazon General Meeting, Fremont Studios, 155 N 35th St., Seattle, WA 98103
WHEN: Tuesday, May 17, 8:30 AM – 10:30 AM PT
The banner reflects the message from 1500 Amazon.com shareholders, 5000 Amazon prime customers and more than 58,000 UltraViolet members who are calling on CEO Jeff Bezos to stop the sale of Donald Trump’s line of menswear (and other Trump-related products) on the Amazon.com marketplace.
Other major brands, including Serta, Macy’s and NBC, have ‘dumped’ Trump, yet Amazon.com continues to sell his merchandise, despite massive public outcry. UltraViolet argues that Amazon should stop profiting off of Trump’s hateful brand and follow the decision by other major retailers to end the sale of Trump products.
Last week, 1500 Amazon Shareholders, organized by Ultraviolet Action sent a letter to CEO Jeff Bezos noting that Donald Trump has incited violence at his campaign events, spewed racism and vitriol that has attracted the support of notable white supremacists, defamed a female reporter after she was assaulted by his campaign manager, and mocked a disabled reporter for asking a question. The letter called on Bezos to take steps to end the sale of Trump merchandise on the Amazon.com marketplace.
SEE THE LETTER HERE: http://act.weareultraviolet.org/sign/Amazon_shareholder_letter/
“Donald Trump has consistently lobbed racist, sexist, and xenophobic attacks against entire groups of people, encouraged violence and vitriol against his political enemies and perpetuated a culture of violence against women. Amazon.com should want to distance themselves from this hateful rhetoric, but instead, they’re profiting off his brand.” Explained Karin Roland, Chief Campaigns Officer at UltraViolet Action. “Jeff Bezos needs to listen to his customers and shareholders and take steps to ensure that Amazon doesn’t profit off of Trump.”
“More than 58,000 people, 5000 Amazon prime customers and 1500 Amazon.com shareholders have made their message to Bezos clear: keep Trump out of the Amazon marketplace,” added Roland.
And another email from AMZN activists yesterday.
Shareholders Resolution Calls for Amazon (NYSE: AMZN) to Address Worker Abuse, Perform Human Rights Risk Assessment
Shareholders Join Corporate Watchdog in Urging Amazon.com Board of Directors to Adopt Resolution Addressing Worker Abuse at Annual General Meeting
SEATTLE — Ahead of Amazon.com’s Annual General Meeting on Tuesday, May 17th, Amazon.com shareholders are calling on the internet giant to adopt a resolution addressing worker abuse by performing a human rights risk assessment.
At the Annual General Meeting later this month, Lisa Lindsley, Capital Markets Advisor for SumOfUs.org, an international corporate watchdog organization, will present proxy resolution Item 4 – calling on Amazon.com to “identify and analyze potential and actual human rights risk of Amazon’s entire operations and supply chain.” The human rights risk resolution was filed jointly by four individual SumOfUs members who are Amazon shareholders.
AMZN – SHAREHOLDER PROPOSAL HERE: https://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1018724/000119312516530747/d78603ddef14a.htm
The proposal is supported by proxy advisory firm ISS, which said, “Amazon could provide additional information regarding the policies the company has implemented to identify and assess human rights risks in its own operations and the relevant mechanisms it has implemented to ensure compliance with such policies. Such information would benefit shareholders, as it would allow them to better understand and assess how the company is managing any associated risks.”
“It is long past time that Amazon’s Board of Directors acknowledge and address worker abuses within their supply chain and ensure that they are following the law where they operate,” explained Lisa Lindsley, representing SumOfUs at Amazon.com’s shareholder meeting later this month. “Providingthis information is critically important to shareholders seeking to assess how the company is managing risks associated with human rights abuses and will compel Amazon executives to ensure that all workers are treated fairly.”
“Amazon.com continues to use a supplier of security services for its headquarters, Security Industry Specialists (SIS), that has ongoing violations of Seattle’s paid sick leave law and routinely harasses workers seeking to exercise their right to freedom of association,” said Sergio Salinas, President of SEIU6 Property Services NW which represents security officers in Seattle. “How can shareholders have confidence that the company is managing human rights risks in its supply chain when they are not being vigilant in their home town?”
Activists from SumOfUs will also deliver more than 104,930 signatures to Amazon.com executives at the shareholder meeting, calling on the global corporation to treat workers better and pay its share of taxes. The petition was also signed by over 18,000 direct and indirect Amazon shareholders, and nearly 73,000 Amazon customers.
For more information, or for interviews with SumOfUs.org, please contact Anna Zuccaro at 914-523-9145 or by email at [email protected]
Looks like big hedge funds are not the only activists pressuring companies for changes anymore.