Jeff Bezos Became Richer Thanks to Covid, but He Still Won’t Protect Amazon Workers

Labor News

Reprinted from The Guardian by Robert Reich on December 13, 2020.

“As a former secretary of labor, I often receive mail from workers with job complaints, who apparently believe I still have some authority. But the email I received a few days ago from a worker at Amazon’s Whole Foods delivery warehouse in Industry City, Brooklyn, New York, was particularly distressing.

“She said that six of her co-workers had tested positive for Covid-19 since 22 October,” writes Robert Reich in The Guardian, “because ‘safe social distancing is not only being ignored but discouraged,’ adding that ‘when we express our discomfort to management, we are yelled at about filling orders faster, or told that we can take a leave of absence without pay.’

“She ended by noting ‘we work for a trillionaire.’

“Well, not quite. Jeff Bezos is worth $180bn, making him the richest person in the world. And his corporation, Amazon, which also owns Whole Foods, is among the world’s richest corporations.

“Bezos has accumulated so much added wealth over the last nine months that he could give every Amazon employee $105,000 and still be as rich as he was before the pandemic. …

Manchester Guardian UK 12/13

About Jeffrey Burman 861 Articles
Jeff Burman served on the Guild’s Board of Directors from 1992 to 2019. He is now retired. He can be reached at