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Amazon hikes overtime pay for workers in US

Amazon Founder and CEO Jeff Bezos sent a memo to employees on Saturday showing health concerns for warehouse workers due to coronavirus outbreak.

Pavni Jain   New Delhi     Last Updated: March 23, 2020  | 17:25 IST

Highlights

  • Jeff Bezos on Saturday announced an increase in overtime pay for warehouse workers.
  • In the official memo, Bezos revealed that the comapny has ordered millions of face masks for employees.
  • Bezos also said: “There is no instruction manual for how to feel at a time like this, and I know this causes stress for everyone.”

As people are stuck at home during this coronavirus outbreak, there is a natural increase in online shopping. One of the world's largest online retailers, Amazon is also witnessing the increase in demand amid COVID-19 pandemic. This is why, Jeff Bezos on Saturday announced that it is raising overtime pay for all those who are working in its US warehouses.

Founder and CEO of Amazon, Bezos sent a memo to employees addressing the health concerns for their warehouse workers. The memo posted on Amazon's website says:"My own time and thinking is now wholly focused on COVID-19 and on how Amazon can best play its role." Bezos further said in the note:"We're hiring for 100,000 new roles and raising wages for our hourly workers who are fulfilling orders and delivering to customers during this period of stress and turmoil."

Well, this is the second time in a week that the company has announced an increase in pay for its workers. On Monday, Amazon hoisted the minimum hourly rate for workers to $17 from $15.

As many businesses like restaurants and bars are shut in the US because of virus spreading, people are relying on e-tailers. And while Amazon is coping up with all the demands, Bezos also ensure that his staff remains healthy.

As the virus spreads across the US, Amazon also has offered unlimited unpaid time off to encourage employees to stay home if they do not feel well. Bezos in his statement also said: "We've implemented a series of preventative health measures for employees and contractors at our sites around the world everything from increasing the frequency and intensity of cleaning to adjusting our practices in fulfillment centers to ensure the recommended social distancing guidelines."

Amazon has also ordered "millions" of face masks for its on-site staff, but a few have been filled due to shortage of the supply and are first going to hospitals as per government's instructions.

"When our turn for masks comes, our first priority will be getting them in the hands of our employees and partners working to get essential products to people," Bezos said.

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