Damage charges at Amazon warehouses elevated about 20% during the last yr, in keeping with a brand new evaluation of firm information.
In a report launched Tuesday, the Strategic Organizing Middle, a coalition of 4 labor unions, analyzed information Amazon has submitted to the Occupational Security and Well being Administration about its warehouses in 2021. That evaluation discovered Amazon accounted for practically half of all accidents within the warehouse business final yr and had a better fee of harm than different non-Amazon services.
The intense harm fee at Amazon warehouses in 2021 was 6.8 per 100 staff, in comparison with a fee of three.3 per 100 at different non-Amazon warehouses, in keeping with the research. For staff who had been severely injured, Amazon staff wanted a mean of 19 extra days to recuperate than staff at different non-Amazon warehouses.
In whole, staff at Amazon services sustained roughly 38,300 accidents in 2021, in comparison with 27,700 in 2020 and 21,200 the yr earlier than.
“Amazon has spent years promising to enhance security at its warehouses,” the report’s authors acknowledged. “But Amazon’s harm charges nonetheless went up. … Amazon is just not doing sufficient to maintain staff secure.”
Pressured to sluggish the tempo of labor at its warehouses, Amazon has defended its security document whereas committing hundreds of thousands to bettering circumstances in its distribution facilities. In his closing letter to shareholders earlier than stepping down as CEO, Jeff Bezos a yr in the past dedicated the corporate to decreasing repetitive-stress accidents incurred in Amazon’s then-roughly 1,500 success facilities worldwide and to investing $300 million in security initiatives.
“Regardless of what we have achieved, it is clear to me that we’d like a greater imaginative and prescient for our staff’ success,” Bezos stated within the April 2021 letter. “We now have at all times wished to be Earth’s Most Buyer-Centric Firm. We cannot change that. … (However) we’re going to be Earth’s Greatest Employer and Earth’s Most secure Place to Work.”
In 2020, Amazon briefly slowed the anticipated tempo of labor at its services, permitting staff further time to account for measures to guard in opposition to the unfold of COVID-19. Since then, it has resumed a tempo that Washington’s Division of Labor and Industries has pinned as unsafe and a direct explanation for harm for staff.
“Many Amazon jobs contain repetitive motions, lifting, carrying, twisting and different bodily work. Employees are required to carry out these duties at such a quick tempo that it will increase the danger of harm,” the division wrote in a March quotation for Amazon’s Kent warehouse. “The corporate is conscious of those hazards.”
Washington’s labor division has cited and fined Amazon 4 instances within the final 11 months for violating office security legal guidelines.
Amazon has appealed the primary three citations and intends to enchantment the fourth. In a November courtroom submitting associated to a quotation at its DuPont facility, the corporate stated its productiveness necessities “enable associates to work comfortably and safely.” Amazon is “consistently searching for new alternatives” to attenuate accidents with new applied sciences and procedures, it wrote.
It maintains that the speed of harm has truly gone down over time. In a security report launched in January, Amazon stated the incident fee improved 24% from 2019 to 2020. The misplaced time incident fee, which accounts for the variety of accidents and diseases that end in time away from work, improved 43%, Amazon’s evaluation discovered.
Amazon has pledged to chop the harm fee at its warehouses in half by 2025 however the authors of the Strategic Organizing Middle’s report say its evaluation has raised “vital questions on Amazon administration’s dedication to stopping employee accidents.”
Considerations in regards to the tempo of labor, worker security and dealing circumstances on the warehouses have led some Amazon staff to pursue union campaigns, hoping to convey the corporate to the bargaining desk to barter issues like increased pay and extra time for water and loo breaks.
Employees at a Staten Island facility voted earlier this month to type the primary union at an Amazon warehouse within the U.S. Since then, organizers for its Amazon Labor Union say they’ve already heard from staff at 100 services throughout the nation excited about beginning their very own union drive.
Employees in Bessemer, Alabama, are nonetheless awaiting the outcomes of its union vote as contested ballots are counted.
The Strategic Organizing Middle’s report discovered the speed of harm elevated during the last yr at each services main the union momentum. In Staten Island, JFK8 noticed its harm fee enhance 15% from 2020 to 2021. In Bessemer, at BHM1, it jumped 43%.
Amazon submitted information to OSHA for 906 services and a workforce of 566,736 individuals in 2021, in keeping with the SOC.
2022 The Seattle Instances.Distributed by Tribune Content material Company, LLC.
Amazon’s harm fee jumped 20% final yr, new report exhibits (2022, April 12)
retrieved 12 April 2022
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