How Amazon Has Continued to Exploit Workers During the Pandemic

Behind every online order are people who are taking risks to pack and deliver it.
March 27, 2020, 12:00pm
A worker wearing a protective mask and gloves carries Inc. boxes during a delivery in the Bronx borough of New York, U.S., on Thursday, March 26, 2020. New York City is the epicenter of the coronavirus pandemic in the United States, putting his

Right now, a lot of people are sitting indoors quarantined from the world, stocked up on supplies and watching way too much Netflix. Some might even feel the impulse to order goods to their doorstep. So, they fire up their Amazon Prime accounts and order some quarantine trinkets.

In the Before Times, that whole process seemed completely normal. But behind the push of the buy button, an entire workforce of Amazon workers, some with limited or no health insurance and no union protecting their employment, are struggling through their orders knowing the virus is either in their fulfillment centers or is about to be. In fact, it already happened in New York City at two of Amazon’s warehouses: Workers fell ill with COVID-19, employees were sent out of the premises, the factory was then sprayed, and three hours later it was business as usual.

This week on CYBER we’re talking to Lauren Kaori Gurley of Motherboard to discuss how the workers of Amazon, headed by the single richest man in the entire world, are faring during this very trying pandemic.