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New York accuses Amazon of resisting worker safety, looking for supervisors

By Jonathan Stempel

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The New York state attorney general on Tuesday asked a state judge to appoint a supervisor to oversee worker safety at an Amazon.com Inc fulfillment center in New York City, citing the alleged retailer’s implementation of COVID-19 safety measures. was “not enough.”

Letitia James, the attorney general, also wants a court order to re-hire Christian Smalls, who was fired by Amazon for allegedly violating a paid quarantine by leading a March 2020 protest over the conditions at the Staten Island facility.

Amazon did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

James, a Democrat running for governor of New York, sued Amazon in February in New York state court in Manhattan over its safety regulations for thousands of workers at the facility. Staten Island and a distribution center in the Queens borough of New York City.

She said Amazon is valuing profit over safety and is “acting as if the pandemic is over” by restoring safety protocols even as the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus threatens to increase transmission speed.

The alleged impediments include making the Staten Island facility an “optional mask” for vaccinated workers while not requiring masks for unvaccinated workers and not practice social distancing.

In his proposal for a preliminary order, James said the proposed supervisor would oversee upgraded cleaning, sanitizing and social distancing procedures.

“While the rate of cases, hospitalizations and deaths increased, Amazon dropped protections and attracted more employees because of its peak holiday season,” James said in the proposal. mine. “Amazon’s continuing – and getting worse – failure to protect workers must come to a halt.”

The Seattle-based company is appealing a New York state judge’s dismissal of James’ lawsuit in October.

Amazon on November 15 reached a separate settlement with California to settle allegations that it violated the state’s “right to know” law by concealing it from warehouse workers and medical agencies. local health statistics on the number of workers infected with COVID-19.

(Reporting by Jonathan Stempel in New York; Editing by Matthew Lewis)

Source link New York accuses Amazon of resisting worker safety, looking for supervisors

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