Labor’s Hard Choice in Amazon Age: Play Along or Get Tough 科技巨頭亞馬遜時代下 勞工的艱難選擇

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2019/04/05 第257期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份

紐時周報精選 Labor’s Hard Choice in Amazon Age: Play Along or Get Tough 科技巨頭亞馬遜時代下 勞工的艱難選擇
Businesses can deliver everything on demand, from dinner to dry cleaning. Now, entrepreneurs are exploring a growing niche: heal


Labor’s Hard Choice in Amazon Age: Play Along or Get Tough 科技巨頭亞馬遜時代下 勞工的艱難選擇
文/Noam Scheibe

It’s one of the most vexing challenges facing the labor movement: how to wield influence in an era increasingly dominated by technology giants that are often resistant to unions.

Are workers best served when unions take an adversarial stance toward such companies? Or should labor groups seek cooperation with employers, even if the resulting deals do little to advance labor’s broader goals?



The debate has flared up around labor’s efforts to make inroads with the likes of Uber and Airbnb, businesses that allow drivers and homeowners to earn income as contractors. And it was on vivid display in the political battle over Amazon’s plan to create a new headquarters in New York with 25,000 jobs.


The plan fell apart in the face of a backlash over public subsidies, resentment of the covert process in which the city and the state negotiated the deal, and concern about its neighborhood impact. But labor issues were also a factor, giving rise to tensions even among unions.


In the more confrontational camp were labor groups led by the Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, which called on the city and the state to withhold nearly $3 billion in subsidies unless Amazon established a “fair process” for its warehouse workers in the city to unionize. The retail workers said they were open to negotiating what that meant.


“I think we stood on principle,” said Stuart Appelbaum, the retail workers’ president. “If you’re aggressively anti-union, we shouldn’t be giving you subsidies.”


A company executive told the City Council in January that Amazon would not remain neutral in an organizing campaign at its local facilities, though an Amazon spokesman said last month“We respect the rights of our employees to choose to join or not join a union.”


In the engagement camp was the local council of building trade unions, whose members were likely to get work from Amazon’s Queens construction. They were joined by a Service Employees International Union local, which had gained the right to represent janitors and other service workers at the Queens complex.


“Their presence in New York — a progressive community, a union town — was eventually going to lead to some potential change down the road,” said Héctor J. Figueroa, president of the service employees local, known as 32BJ.




give rise to與lead to中文都是「導致」,不過,give rise to較正式,通常指引發負面的事,如:His speech gave rise to a bitter argument.又如:The president’s absence has given rise to speculation about his health.

lead to較無限制,可接正面或負面的事,如:a process of negotiation leading to a peaceful settlement。

resistant、adversarial、confrontational乍看都是「敵對、對抗的」,但用法不同。resistant指「反對某事,而且想阻止它發生」,如:Many managers are resistant to change.

adversarial通常指兩方互相反對和攻擊,如:the adversarial nature of two-party politics。

confrontational是指「很可能引發爭論或令人生氣」,如:a confrontational style of management。


Businesses can deliver everything on demand, from dinner to dry cleaning. Now, entrepreneurs are exploring a growing niche: heal
文/Janet Morrissey


Startups are offering access to doctors, prescription drugs and wellness programs as fast and easy as hailing an Uber driver. Experts say this is the early stages of a movement that could disrupt the health services industry, which critics have long contended suffers from soaring costs and reduced access to care.


“Health care delivery is so broken that we need to explore new channels — new conduits — and this represents one of them,” said Dr. Eric Topol, a cardiologist and author of “The Patient Will See You Now.”


The on-demand economy, which offers consumers immediate access to goods and services, surged 58 percent in 2017 from the previous year to an estimated $75.7 billion, according to a study by Rockbridge Associates, a market research firm.

根據市場研究公司Rockbridge Associates的調查,讓消費者能立刻獲得商品與服務的隨選經濟,2017年規模較前一年成長58%,約達757億美元。

As the industry swells, dozens of health and wellness companies are tapping the trend.


Heal, DispatchHealth, MedZed, Dose Healthcare and Pager will send a doctor or a nurse practitioner to a person’s home or workplace to treat nonemergency problems like strep throat or a sprained ankle. The I.V. Doc offers intravenous treatments for conditions like jet lag, hangovers and food poisoning. And Capsule will deliver prescriptions to a person’s doorstep.

新創公司Heal、MedZed、DispatchHealth、Dose Healthcare及Pager會派一名醫生或執業護理師到一個人的家裡或工作場所,以處理鏈球菌咽喉炎或腳踝扭傷等不須急救的問題,IV Doc則為時差、宿醉與食物中毒等情況提供靜脈注射治療,而Capsule會將處方藥送到你家門口。

Some startups — especially on-demand medical companies, like Heal and DispatchHealth — needed substantial cash to hire doctors, lease vehicles and bring in administrative staff to handle insurance claims.


Cue the investors.


Samir M. Patel, a principal and co-founder of IRA Capital, was so impressed with Heal after using it for at-home visits and an annual physical in his office that he became an investor.


But the potential to be the next “unicorn” — a startup valued at $1 billion or more — has created a crowded field.


The popularity of the I.V. Doc prompted a flurry of smaller companies, like IVDrips, Drip Hydration and the Hangover Club/NutriDrip, to offer similar services — sometimes at cheaper prices. To fend off competition, the I.V. Doc recently expanded to offer injectable drugs, like Botox and Restylane, as well as postoperative care for plastic surgery.

IV Doc大受歡迎,促使一些較小的公司如IVDrips,Drip Hydration與Hangover Club或NutriDrip提供類似服務,有時候收費更低。為了擺脫競爭,IV Doc近來擴大服務範圍,開始提供注射藥物如保妥適肉毒桿菌素與瑞絲朗玻尿酸,以及整形手術的術後照護。


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