Amazon staff and labor rights teams selected Cyber Monday to demand the net retailer restore hazard pay and supply staff extra protecting gear due to the nationwide surge in coronavirus circumstances.
Whereas urging assist for a web based petition calling for higher remedy of workers, the group Warehouse Staff for Justice introduced a separate petition calling on the town of Chicago to cut back its finances deficit by elevating taxes on Amazon.
“They’re not involved about our lives. They’re extra involved about their packages,’’ stated Garrick Sparkman, an Amazon driver from Gary, Indiana.
Throughout a convention name with media, a number of staff and their supporters referred to as on the net retailer to carry again a $2-per-hour pay improve that utilized early within the pandemic however ended round June 1. With income hovering as a result of shoppers have turned to on-line procuring, the corporate can afford to assist workers who put themselves in danger, they stated.
The Brookings Establishment stated in a report issued in November that Amazon might have quadrupled its hazard pay and nonetheless posted larger income by means of the primary three quarters of this 12 months. The report, masking 13 of the nation’s largest retailers together with Amazon, stated their general income rose 39% in contrast with a 12 months in the past whereas wages of frontline staff had been up about 10%.
Staff stated Amazon’s virus safety for workers is lax. Driver Austin Lightfoot stated there was solely in the future of worker temperature checks and supply vans are by no means wiped down with disinfectant.
Amazon spokesperson Maria Boschetti didn’t reply straight concerning the hazard pay. She stated in an electronic mail, “Now we have remodeled 150 COVID-19 course of updates and procured protecting gear to guard our groups and we did it as a result of it was the suitable factor to do for our associates who’re performing a significant service throughout this disaster. We encourage anybody within the details to check our general pay and advantages, in addition to our pace in managing this disaster, to different retailers and main employers throughout the nation.”
In an Oct. 1 weblog submit, the corporate stated 19,816 of workers nationwide had examined constructive for the coronavirus. It stated the an infection fee amongst 1.37 million Amazon and Entire Meals Market workers was far lower than that of the overall inhabitants.
The corporate additionally stated it assessments staff commonly, even when they’re asymptomatic.
The employees urged Chicago to impose a head tax on Amazon — a tax per worker — slightly than elevate property taxes on everybody. Nonetheless, even when the town imposed such a head tax, it might have restricted impact on Amazon, as most of its greater than 11,000 Illinois jobs are outdoors Chicago.