Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and different members of the Congressional Oversight Committee have despatched a letter to Amazon CEO Adam Jassy informing him they’re investigating whether or not Amazon forces staff to work throughout harmful climate occasions.
In the letter, the Congressional Oversight Committee committee expresses concern over current and previous experiences that Amazon staff and contractors are threatened with job loss in the event that they search shelter throughout excessive climate situations. Specifically, the letter factors to the lethal twister strikes in Edwardsville, Illinois, in December 2021, wherein six Amazon employees at an area warehouse have been killed. As the letter factors out:
Before he died within the Amazon warehouse collapse, Amazon worker Larry Virden texted his girlfriend, “Amazon won’t let us leave.” According to dispatcher messages, a contract supply driver situated outdoors the Edwardsville facility, who expressed concern in regards to the rising storms, was advised by her supervisor to “just keep delivering, we can’t just call people back for a warning unless amazon [sic] tells us to do so.” When the driving force reported continued twister alarms and requested permission to hunt security, she was advised such a alternative “will ultimately end with you not having a job come tomorrow morning.”
The letter additionally inquires about experiences of Amazon employees being required to maintain working throughout wildfires in California in 2018 and flooding brought on by Hurricane Irma in 2017 and Hurricane Ida in 2021, amongst different occasions.
“The Committee seeks to fully understand the events that led to the tragedy at Amazon’s Edwardsville facility,” the letter reads. “We also seek information about Amazon’s workplace policies or practices that may have prevented the workers from seeking safe shelter, as well as Amazon’s actions in responding to other severe weather incidents and natural disasters.”
The Congressional Oversight Committee is giving Amazon till April 14 handy over paperwork and communications associated to the acute climate occasions famous in addition to Amazon’s insurance policies on working throughout excessive climate occasions.
We’ve reached out to Amazon for remark and can replace this submit if we hear again.