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The National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) reportedly said that Amazon fired two employees last year illegally.
The fired employees criticized the working conditions of Amazon warehouses publically.
Furthermore, the employees also asked the company to address climate change.
Amazon’s Negligence Towards Its Employees
Amazon has a history of treating its workers poorly.
Most employees work 12-hour shifts with little to no breaks.
For instance, in an article published by The Guardian, an employee named Rina Cummings works 12-hour shifts and has to scan 1,800 Amazon packages an hour.
This translates to about 30 packages a minute. Amazon provides just two 15 minute breaks.
Employees started a petition, asking Amazon to combine the two breaks into one 30-minute break because it takes about 15 minutes to walk from the warehouses to the break rooms.
Illegal Firing of Employees
Amazon fired two employees, Emily Cunninghan and Maren Costa, for speaking publicly against horrible warehouse working conditions during the coronavirus pandemic.
The fired employees were UX designers at the e-commerce giant.
They were also active members of a group named Amazon Employees for Climate Justice.
Amazon gave the following statement when asked to comment on the matter:
“We terminated these employees not for talking publicly about working conditions, safety, or sustainability, but rather, for repeatedly violating internal policies.”
Will the Situation for Amazon Employees Get Better?
After the firings, nine U.S. senators, including Vice President Kamala Harris, question Amazon’s leaders about the termination policies and accusations.
The NLRB findings seem to have set off Amazon warehouse unionization efforts throughout the country.
However, the actual root problem is still not being addressed: unfair working conditions of warehouse employees.
Frequent injuries at Amazon warehouses are reported.
For example, Rina Cummings nearly lost her arm to a pin sticking out from a conveyor belt, which tore off her gloves.
Furthermore, people get fired regularly from these warehouses.
According to Cummings, employees can get fired for anything.