Workers at six Amazon German fulfillment centers are going on strike over recent coronavirus cases, German labor union Verdi and Amazon confirmed to CNN.

Verdi on Sunday called for workers to strike for 48 hours starting Monday, in order to protest the safety at Amazon fulfillment centers amid recent coronavirus infections. In Bad Hersfeld, Germany, the union said at least 30 to 40 workers have been infected.

“Amazon has so far shown no insight and is endangering the health of employees in favor of corporate profit,” said Verdi representative Orhan Akman.

Verdi also wants Amazon to recognize regional wage agreements for the retail sector. “If the company thought we were going to leave it alone because of the coronavirus pandemic, it was wrong,” said Verdi.

Amazon confirmed the strike in a statement saying the majority of associates were not participating and there was no impact on customer orders. 

“The fact that more than 8,000 of our over 13,000 permanent associates in Germany are with us for more than 5 years proves that we are a fair employer. Everything the union demands is already in place: Wages at the upper end from what is paid for similar jobs, career opportunities and a safe working environment,” said an Amazon spokesperson in Germany.

Amazon said that by the end of June it will have invested approximately $4 billion worldwide on Covid-related initiatives and that in Germany alone, it has ordered 470 million units of hand disinfectant, 21 million pairs of gloves, 19 million units of face masks, face shields and other mouth-nose-covers and 39 million units of disinfectant wipes.

The strikes are taking place in Leipzig, Bad Hersfeld which has two fulfillment centers, Rheinberg, Werne and Koblenz.

Source : CNN


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