- Amazon workers are demanding that the company give all US employees paid time off to vote in the upcoming election, NBC News reported Tuesday.
- The petition, which gained more than 3,200 supporters, called for “a paid day/shift off that can be used anytime between now and Election Day on Nov 3” and “every year” in the future, according to NBC News.
- “We have supplied all of our employees with information on how to register to vote, details of their local polling locations and how to request time off to vote,” an Amazon spokesperson told Business Insider.
- Amazon and subsidiary Whole Foods employ nearly 1.4 million workers in the US.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
Amazon workers, who have become increasingly vocal about the company’s policies during the pandemic, have a new demand: time off to vote in the upcoming US elections.
More than 3,200 Amazon workers have signed a petition circulating internally demanding the company give its entire US workforce a paid day or shift off to vote, NBC News reported Tuesday.
“We are less than a month away from the 2020 US election. I strongly urge the company to provide the entire US employee workforce with a paid day/shift off that can be used anytime between now and Election Day on Nov 3,” read the petition, which has been circulating on an internal Amazon support ticket system, according to NBC News.
The petition also demanded that the “additional day/shift off must be available to all employees every year,” NBC News reported.
Amazon and its subsidiary Whole Foods have 1,372,000 “front-line” workers across the US — accounting for roughly 1 of every 200 of the country’s voting-age population — but doesn’t currently guarantee them time off to vote in person.
“We have supplied all of our employees with
Thousands of Amazon’s tech workers have signed a petition calling for the e-commerce giant to provide paid time off to all of its employees to vote.
Between Amazon’s corporate and warehouse employees, as well as Amazon-owned Whole Foods’ workers, the company employs more than 1.3 million people in the United States and is the second largest private employer in the country.
The petition, first reported by NBC News, calls for eight hours of paid time off to be made available to employees to use up until Election Day for voting-related activities, including registering to vote and volunteering.
More than 3,000 employees have signed the petition, which launched Tuesday morning via an internal company tool and was organized by Amazon Employees for Climate Justice, a group of corporate employees that originally formed to advocate on climate issues, applying pressure to the company and seeing some results.
Earlier this year, two of the organization’s leaders — Emily Cunningham and Maren Costa — were fired after being vocal about warehouse worker conditions during the pandemic. Amazon said in a statement at the time that it “terminated these employees for repeatedly violating internal policies.”
In order to give people the opportunity to vote, hundreds of companies, including Walmart, Starbucks, and Twitter, have announced they would give workers some additional paid time off.
But Amazon “currently requires workers to use vacation time to vote (if they have it) or gives the bare minimum time off as required by individual state laws,” according to a press release from the organizing group.
Amazon spokesperson Jaci Anderson said in a statement to CNN Business: “We have supplied all of our employees with information on how to register to vote, details of their local polling locations and how to request time off to
Thousands of Amazon tech workers Tuesday signed an internal petition urging the company to offer paid time off for its workforce to vote on or before Election Day.
While Amazon is the second largest employer in the country, with 1,372,000 U.S. workers including Whole Foods employees, it does not offer paid time off to participate in federal elections.
More than 1,500 Amazon tech workers added their support to the petition one hour after it was launched internally Tuesday morning. By noon PT, the petition had reached 3,243 supporters. The call is hosted on the company’s internal ticketing system, which is used by workers to submit requests and tasks to be completed on the job, like fixing bugs found on a website. It’s also used internally as a way for employees to submit requests for changes to company policies, like benefits.
“We are less than a month away from the 2020 U.S. election. I strongly urge the company to provide the entire US employee workforce with a paid day/shift off that can be used anytime between now and Election Day on Nov 3,” the petition, hosted on the company’s ticketing system, reads.
“This additional day/shift off must be available to all employees every year.”
Employees who support the call for time off to vote are signing on by adding a “+1” to the ticket or leaving a comment of support below the petition.
Amazon declined requests for comment.
The action was organized by the Amazon Employees for Climate Justice, a group of Amazon tech workers formed in 2018 to pressure their employer to commit to reducing fossil fuel emissions. The group previously persuaded the company to reduce fossil fuel emissions in September 2019 after repeated calls from thousands of employees.
This year, the climate group expanded its focus to speaking out
- German Amazon workers are striking during the company’s Prime Day, a two-day discount event.
- Workers at seven Amazon warehouses in cities including Leipzig and Koblenz are striking in shifts to avoid large crowds.
- Amazon staff have been working “without adequate protection” during the pandemic, and the company has scrapped its coronavirus bonus, German trade union Verdi said.
- An Amazon spokesman told Business Insider that the strikes will have no impact on its deliveries in Germany.
- Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.
German staff at Amazon are striking during the e-commerce giant’s annual Prime Day event on Tuesday and Wednesday over pay and conditions in its warehouses since the outbreak of the pandemic.
Workers at seven Amazon warehouses in cities including Leipzig and Koblenz are striking in shifts to avoid large crowds.
The country’s second-largest union, Verdi, said it was organizing the strike because staff have been working “without adequate protection,” and haven’t been compensated for the additional stress of working during the pandemic.
An Amazon spokesperson told Business Insider that the strikes will not impact its deliveries in Germany, the company’s second-biggest market after the US.
The company already offers “excellent pay, benefits, and opportunities for career growth,” they added, with a safe working environment that is “set up to help them succeed.”
The company told Reuters that most employees in Germany were working as normal.
Orhan Akman, Verdi’s retail representative, pointed out that at the end of May, the company scrapped a coronavirus bonus of 2 euros ($2.36) an hour, just two months after it was introduced.
Amazon can “certainly” afford to pay staff the bonus, Akman claimed, because it doesn’t face the same problems that are causing bricks and mortar retailers to fold during the pandemic.
Amazon should make the bonus a permanent salary increase for all
(Bloomberg) — Coinbase Inc.’s clampdown on discussing politics and activism at work — and the offer of severance packages to employees who don’t want to comply — continues to ripple through the cryptocurrency exchange and Silicon Valley.
Many employees were shocked by Chief Executive Officer Brian Armstrong’s blog post imposing the rules Sunday, and some are concerned that he is trying to stymie discourse that should be happening, according to two people familiar with the situation who asked not to be identified. Neither knew of anyone taking an exit package from the San Francisco-based company, but employees have until Oct. 7 to apply.
Jack Dorsey, Twitter Inc.’s CEO and a noted Bitcoin advocate, criticized Armstrong’s ban on politics, saying late Wednesday the change runs counter to the core principles of cryptocurrencies. Other veterans of the digital-asset industry suggested Armstrong’s stance represents a broader shift taking place in a sector that was founded by computer hackers and libertarian-leaning programmers.
Twitter’s former CEO, Dick Costolo, also weighed in, tweeting that “me-first capitalists who think you can separate society from business are going to be the first people lined up against the wall and shot in the revolution.”
Read more: Coinbase’s no-politics stance rankles Silicon Valley
The polarizing 2020 campaign, epitomized by the chaotic debate this week between President Donald Trump and Democratic challenger Joe Biden, has left many companies struggling with how to stay above the fray. But the cryptocurrency industry, built on iconoclastic ideas, faces its own challenges.
“This is highlighting an evolution in crypto culture,” said Adam Draper, a venture capitalist who was an early investor in Coinbase. “Crypto is about the innovation in finance and connecting the world’s financial infrastructure. The culture of