Jeff Bezos, CEO, Amazon
Open Letter to Protect Amazon Workers and Our Communities
Dear Jeff Bezos,
Our communities, our neighbors and our families are at risk when Amazon workers are exposed to covid-19. Many of us live in Kent and around South King County, so we are close to Kent’s Amazon fulfillment center. We are concerned that many Amazon workers may be unknowing victims of covid-19 and are spreading it to their families and others in and around Kent.
Hourly workers in “essential industries” are putting their lives at risk during this quarantine.
We need you to show leadership and take more steps to protect the workers at Amazon. Workers at the fulfillment center in Staten Island, NY, walked out to demand that Amazon take steps to protect them from contracting COVID-19.
As you know, there are reports of at least one worker at the Kent fulfillment facility who has tested positive for COVID-19. It is urgent that steps are taken to protect all the workers and the surrounding communities.
We call on Amazon to do the following:
Institute paid sick leave for ALL workers, regardless of coronavirus diagnosis;
Provide hazard pay at 1.5 times the hourly rate during the crisis;
Provide childcare pay due to school and childcare facility closures;
Stop enforcing rate-based quotas and punishing workers during times of increased demand;
Immediately close down workplaces — including the Kent fulfillment center — for at least two weeks of sanitizing and provide full pay during this; and,
Provide testing and paid self-isolation for all workers at covid-19-positive facilities, including in Kent.
Show these workers the respect they deserve and take the protective steps. Be a good neighbor and employer — now.
Cliff Cawthon on behalf of the MLK Working Families Party
cc: Washington Gov. Jay Inslee
Sen. Mona Das
Rep. Debra Entenman
Rep. Pat Sullivan
Kent Mayor Dana Ralph
City Council President Toni Troutner
Councilmember Bill Boyce
Councilmember Brenda Fincher
Councilmember Satwinder Kaur
Councilmember Marli Larimer
Councilmember Zandria Michaud
Councilmember Les Thomas
Read more in the Apr. 22-28, 2020 issue.