Two former employees of a global online retail organization are speaking out against their employer, stating leaders failed to protect warehouse employees, and then retaliated against the employees who tried to do something about it.
The two tech employees say they wrote an email to colleagues addressing the warehouse working conditions, which led to an online event featuring warehouse employees sharing their experiences. After considerable positive response, the original email disappeared, invitees saw the event deleted from their calendar, and the employer terminated the two tech employees.
According to one of the workers terminated, the employer told her the termination was because she violated the organization's "non-solicitation" policy. The employer's spokesperson stated they terminated the two tech workers for "repeatedly violating internal policies," and gave no further explanation.
Employees then planned a "sick-out" protest in response to the terminations. Again, organizers invited employees to watch online speakers, and again, the employer deleted the emailed invitations.
Over the past two months, the employer terminated multiple warehouse employees and criticized several others because, workers say, they spoke out in opposition to inadequate safety measures in the warehouse. The employer terminated the organizer of a walk-out at its New York City-area plant, which has experience at least 27 COVID-19 cases. The employer rejected the protesters' allegations, but soon after implemented changes that addressed many of the concerns. Josh Dzieza "Amazon tech workers are calling out sick in protest over COVID-19 response" www.theverge.com (Apr. 24, 2020).