US senators call for Amazon answer questions about warehouse worker safety

US senators call for Amazon answer questions about warehouse worker safety

a bunch of four US senators, including Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders, have despatched a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos asking him to respond to questions about how the corporate is protecting its warehouse workers safe amid the continued spread of the radical coronavirus. The senators sent the letter two days after the primary US-based totally Amazon warehouse worker tested positive for COVID-19, the disease due to the virus.

the crowd of senators is led by way of Sen. Cory Booker (D-NJ) and Bob Menendez (D-NJ) and contains Sanders and Sherrod Brown (D-OH). “Any failure of Amazon to keep its staff protected doesn’t simply placed their staff in peril, it places all of the united states at risk,” the gang mentioned in the letter. The senators are also asking Amazon to supply paid ill leave and time-and-a-half hazard pay, amongst different monetary and health protections.

“Any failure of Amazon to maintain its staff secure doesn’t simply positioned their staff in danger, it puts all the united states at risk.”

“The virus that reasons COVID-19 can are living for as much as 24 hours on cardboard and as much as 3 days on plastic and stainless-steel,” the letter says. “that means that American Citizens who are taking every precaution, staying home and working towards social distancing, may chance getting infected with COVID-19 as a result of Amazon’s determination to prioritize potency and earnings over the safety and neatly-being of its staff.”

The letter additionally discussed experiences of troubling conditions at Amazon warehouses, comparable to how Amazon warehouse managers have held common stand-up meetings with workforce, which most likely positioned workers closer than the CDC-really useful six ft of distance clear of one another, and a lack of hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes. Amazon warehouse staff and delivery drivers that just lately spoke to The Verge described similar conditions.

The senators are asking Bezos to respond to the next questions through March 26th:

What preventative steps is Amazon taking to verify its staff do not settlement COVID-19? Will Amazon agree to cover the cost of trying out for COVID-19 for its staff? Will Amazon droop rate-based totally write-ups until the threat of COVID-19 is mitigated? Will Amazon provide paid ill depart to its staff without reference to diagnosis? Will Amazon supply its employees time and a half hazard pay during this period of heightened risk? Will Amazon pledge to immediately shut down any facility on a brief basis during which a worker exams sure for coronavirus and offer two weeks of paid unwell go away to workers at that facility as they self-isolate? “Those accusations are simply unfounded.”

“Those accusations are merely unfounded,” said Amazon in an announcement supplied to The Verge. “Our staff are heroes fighting for his or her groups and serving to folks get critical items they want in this main issue. like all companies grappling with the continued coronavirus pandemic, it’s hard as supplies are limited, however we’re running arduous to keep staff protected even as serving communities and essentially the most inclined. we now have taken extreme measures to maintain other folks protected, tripling down on deep cleansing, purchasing protection supplies which might be to be had, and changing processes to make sure the ones in our buildings are protecting safe distances.”

to assist improve employees, Amazon said it has larger cleansing at its worksites, ended stand-up meetings right through shifts, and staggered start and holiday instances. the company said on March eleventh that it will provide as much as weeks of paid unwell depart to all workers recognized with COVID-19. the company may even raise its minimum wage by way of $2 in line with hour via April, the corporate announced in advance this week.

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