On Saturday, hundreds of people rallied against Amazon’s expansion.
Few anti-capitalist and environmental groups called for a protest where the e-commerce giant has plans to make a massive warehouse. The demonstrators highlighted that many people are under precarious working contracts and suffer a great deal at the company’s whim. Several people are hired during holiday or festive seasons and then shortly fired afterward.
Amazon intends to set up a 38,000-square-meter (400,000-square-feet) office in the little southern town of Fournes close to the Pont du Gard.
The police stated that around 800 protesters participated in the dissent and the organizers said that 1,400 showed up. The demonstrators planted bushes before enormous banners stating “Stop Amazon” and “Not here or anyplace”.
They created a human chain to showcase the size of the project. The demonstrators chorused: “Amazon, not here, not elsewhere”, and waved flags, and held a huge banner reading “Stop Amazon”. There were balloons of around 18 meters in height showing the projected height of the warehouse.
“It’s been two years that the residents of Fournes and its environmental activists have protested against the Amazon’s plan to build up a warehouse,” Raphael Pradeau, a representative for French citizens’ activist group Attac stated.
“Toward the beginning, they were somewhat alone against everybody, however, with some legal discourse, they have been successful in slowing back the project,” he added.
“We need to show that these are not little disengaged protests and that we can mobilize more people to participate in stopping the work”, stated Pradeau.
38-year old, Sarah Latour had planted a shrub in the waste ground along with her two sons, age 6 and 8, where wines had once thrived.
“These bushes that we are planting today are a symbol of life that diverges from the works that Amazon exercises,” she said.
“I accompanied my kids since I don’t wish to see this hazardous model for their future environment.” Nearly 200 people demonstrated outside the Amazon office in Carquefou, a neighborhood of the western city of Nantes, the organizers stated.
“We censure Amazon for decimating a larger number of jobs than they produce stated Sophie Jallier, a representative for the protest organizers in Carquefou.
Around 100 people accumulated in the eastern town of Ensisheim to protest against the construction of a huge warehouse by Amazon Inc. in a 15-hectare area from a former horticultural land.
“Today, we censure a monetary system that is pushed beyond its limits and which is utilizing the planet,” stated Isabelle Schaeffer, an activist from an ecological society in the Sud Alsace locale.
Rallies against Amazon’s warehouse also took place in other areas, such as Quimper, Metz, Augny, Moselle, and Rouen regions.
Eric Barbier an environmentalist from Alteratiba stated in Perpignan that Amazon exercises unfair competition with concern to companies that pay their taxes in France.
More than 11,000 French businesses depend on Amazon to do business and create new jobs, many have utilized it to hire 9,300 people with excellent job opportunities and good basic pay, it added.