Amazon employees in NY, FL, KY, TX, MI and OK test positive for COVID-19

Fulfillment centers in New York, Florida, Kentucky, Texas, Michigan and Oklahoma have been closed down.

A WORKER packs completed orders at an Amazon fulfilment center. These simple brown boxes have ignited a mini frenzy here in the Holy Land. (Phil Noble/Reuters) (photo credit: REUTERS)
A WORKER packs completed orders at an Amazon fulfilment center. These simple brown boxes have ignited a mini frenzy here in the Holy Land. (Phil Noble/Reuters)
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Amazon workers in at least six warehouses across the United States have tested positive for COVID-19, according to The Washington Post.
In line with local media reports, in the past few days fulfillment centers in New York, Florida, Kentucky, Texas, Michigan and Oklahoma have been closed down for cleaning and workers suspected of being in contact with those who tested positive have been quarantined.
“We are supporting the individuals, following guidelines from local officials, and are taking extreme measures to ensure the safety of all the employees at our sites,” Amazon spokeswoman Lisa Levandowski said in an emailed statement to the Post.
Earlier this month, Amazon employees working in warehouses in both Spain and Italy tested positive for COVID-19 after contracting the coronavirus. In light of such news, the Amazon workforce started a petition last week, calling on the organization to take further precautions to better protect their workers against the viral spread. 1,500 employees have since signed the petition.
Amazon says they are following the instruction of health officials regarding proper protocols in which to continue operations, taking the relevant precautions to protect their workers in the process.
“We are going to great lengths to keep the buildings extremely clean and help employees practice important precautions such as social distancing and other measures,” Amazon spokeswoman Kelly Cheeseman said, according to the Post. “Those who don’t want to come to work are welcome to use paid and unpaid time off options and we support them in doing so.”
Amazon already started delaying shipments of non-essential items to the United States for up to one month - prioritizing deliveries of medical supplies and basic household items in an attempt to get a handle on customer demand as a  result of the coronavirus outbreak.
Merchants and customers took to social media on Sunday to note that shipments of some "non-essential" products were showing April 21 delivery dates, even though these items are listed as fully in-stock.
Last week, Amazon noted that it would start creating these protocols on non-essential items such as coffee makers, electronics, toys, puzzles, etc.
An Amazon spokesman said the company made the decision due to a spike in orders and the need to respect anti-coronavirus safety measures in the workplaces.
Tuesday, they announced they would be adding an extra 100,000 employees to get a handle the comsumer surplus, one day before the positive tests surfaced in the six fulfillment centers.
"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. We hope people who’ve been laid off will come work with us until they’re able to go back to the jobs they had," Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos wrote in a letter to employees.
"Much of the essential work we do cannot be done from home. 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. We are meeting every day, working to identify additional ways to improve on these measures," Bezos said in the letter.
The move comes on the heels of actions Amazon took on Tuesday when it said it will only receive vital supplies at its US and UK and other European warehouses until April 5 to free up inventory space for medical and household goods.
“We’ve changed our logistics, transportation, supply chain, purchasing, and third party seller processes to prioritize stocking and delivering essential items like household staples, sanitizers, baby formula, and medical supplies. We’re providing a vital service to people everywhere, especially to those, like the elderly, who are most vulnerable. People are depending on us," Bezos exclaimed.
"My own time and thinking is now wholly focused on COVID-19 and on how Amazon can best play its role. I want you to know Amazon will continue to do its part, and we won’t stop looking for new opportunities to help."


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