Amazon boss Andy Jassy is facing a probe into whether he broke federal labor laws over comments he made saying company workers would benefit more without union representation.

Mr. Jassy made the comments in TV interviews earlier this year, and National Labor Relations Board officials have now launched a lawsuit against him, accusing him of breaking the law.

The allegation against Jassy focuses on remarks he made in April to CNBC and in June to Bloomberg Television.

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Jassy declared in the Bloomberg interview that Amazon employees would be better off without a union.

He said this would make it harder for staff to have direct interaction with management.

NLRB regional director Ronald Hooks said Jassy has been “interfering with, restraining and coercing employees” and claimed the statements are in violation of federal labor laws.

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The complaint asks Amazon to respond in writing by Tuesday, November 8, and scheduled a hearing on the matter before an administrative law judge in February.

Amazon spokeswoman Kelly Nantel said: “These allegations are completely without merit.

“The comments in question are clearly protected by express language of the National Labor Relations Act and decades of NLRB precedent.

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“The comments lawfully explain Amazon’s views on unionization and the way it could affect the ability of our employees to deal directly with their managers.

“They began with a clear recognition of our employees’ right to organize and in no way contained threats of reprisal.” 

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In April, the Amazon Labor Union won an election to represent employees at an Amazon facility on Staten Island, New York.

Workers demanding better pay, benefits, and working conditions at an Amazon warehouse in Southern California withdrew an effort to hold a union election earlier this week.

Source: Bloomberg

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