In October 2020, Amazon released a study to employees stating that 19,816 of its 1.4 cardinal frontline U.S. employees had tested affirmative for the virus
By Amanda Breen
At slightest 20,000 Amazon employees tested postive for COVID-19 past year—and the online retail elephantine claimed lone 27 of those cases were contracted portion employees were connected the job.
In October 2020, Amazon released a study to employees stating that the 19,816 postive tests were among the 1.4 cardinal frontline U.S. employees of Amazon and Whole Foods.
The Strategic Organizing Center (SOC), a conjugation of 4 unions that includes the Teamsters union, the Service Employees Union, the Communication Workers of America and the United Farm Workers of America, aims to supply Amazon workers with representation, saying the company’s underreporting is akin to a “hidden pandemic.”
SOC has asked the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to analyse Amazon’s “disturbing signifier of misleading oregon grossly incomplete accusation provided to authorities astir COVID-19 cases successful its warehouses.”
“Amazon, the nation’s 2nd largest backstage employer, enactment workers’ lives astatine hazard by depriving OSHA of accusation astir COVID-19 cases successful its facilities, undermining the agency’s quality to place workplace hazards and to clasp the institution accountable for unsafe conditions,” the labour radical said.
Related: Amazon Workers Sue Over Alleged Failure to Follow COVID-19 Guidelines
Although Amazon did not contention the fig of cases referenced by SOC, the institution did telephone the group’s study intentionally misleading and cited measures it has taken to support its employees safe, including spending much than $15 cardinal connected things similar interaction tracing, on-site vaccine clinics and investigating and different process shifts and wellness protections.
In the aforesaid October statement to employees, the institution stressed that it’s intolerable to pinpoint the nonstop root of COVID-19 infections: “And of course, a affirmative trial does not mean idiosyncratic became infected arsenic a effect of their employment with Amazon—these individuals tin beryllium exposed successful galore ways extracurricular of work.”
This isn’t the archetypal COVID-related accusation lobbed astatine Amazon. Employees and immoderate nationalist officials person said the institution failed to supply employees with capable wellness protections astatine work, prompting New York Attorney General Letitia James to record suit earlier this year.
Related: Amazon Workers successful New York City Target a Union Vote
And, arsenic the second-largest backstage assemblage leader successful the U.S., Amazon has gotten the attraction of respective unions trying to found practice for its workers. The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union seeks to correspond the workers astatine an Amazon warehouse successful Bessemer, Alabama, and an autarkic national aims to signifier employees astatine the company’s Staten Island, New York facility.