In contrast to the firmly publicized contest of HQ2, which pit cities in opposition to each other to be able to save extra strong incentives for Amazon, the Woodside facility—the primary in Queens—flew beneath the radar. Amazon reportedly signed the last decade-lengthy lease on 91,000-sq.-foot warehouse previously occupied by a wristwatch firm in October and didn’t wring any financial sweeteners out of the borough or metropolis to maneuver there, no less than to Senator Ramos’s data.
Nonetheless, Ramos, State Assemblyman and present Public Advocate candidate Ron Kim, and representatives from advocacy organizations NYCC, DRUM and ALIGN, (all mainstays of protests towards HQ2 in New York) turned out to face on a bland patch of sidewalk bounded by a U-Haul facility, a freeway, a barbed wire fence, and a cemetery at 11 am. Why? To strike out at Amazon’s famously anti-union stance, which to some extent could have carried out essentially the most injury to its probabilities of opening its proposed Lengthy Island Metropolis headquarters.
Retail, Wholesale and Division Retailer Union, which famously has been advocating for Amazon employees on the Staten Island warehouse to unionize, additionally got here out to assist the hassle. “I believe this narrative about ‘we don’t need jobs, and we need to minimize our nostril to spite our face’ is inaccurate. We do need jobs,” Camille Rivera, the Nationwide Political and Legislative Director RWDSU, mentioned, pushing again towards comparable criticism directed at anti-HQ2 politicians who’ve since been accused of costing the town 25,000 jobs. “We would like good jobs, we would like protected jobs, and we would like Amazon to be accountable when they’re coming to a metropolis like New York.” Given the scale of the warehouse, Senator Ramos expects the Woodside facility to make use of round 2,000 folks when it’s lastly operational, although no public date exists but for its opening. Neutrality within the face of a union drive was a severe sticking level between the New York Metropolis Council and Amazon’s Brian Huseman throughout hearings relating to HQ2.