Amazon has been the subject of criticism based on the grueling conditions many of its warehouse workers are exposed to. The giant online retailer fails to provide its injured workers with proper treatment through a system that includes faulty in-house medical care, an absence of information for employees on their workers’ compensation policies, and an overall lack of action to assist injured employees.
Unsafe Conditions and OSHA Violations
The repetitive nature of work in an Amazon warehouse is coupled with pressure to produce high production metrics, resulting in widespread stress injuries for employees. Amazon workers are often required to work long hours with minimal or no break time in order to meet their targets for the day. These aggressive practices have inspired multiple worker protests against the company, most recently during Amazon’s “Prime Day,” one of its busiest days of the year.
Amazon fulfillment centers have received attention from regulatory agencies as well: The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has completed “over 100 federal investigations launched against Amazon since 2016,” according to a report from Mother Jones. In April 2018, the company was identified as one of the most dangerous places to work by the National Council for Occupational Safety and Health.
AmCare: Amazon’s In-House Medical Facility
Amazon’s warehouses have in-house “AmCare” clinics which are meant to be an accessible way for their employees to receive medical treatment for an on-the-job injury. The process of receiving treatment in an AmCare facility requires hurt workers to report their injury to their employer, and then visit the clinic. The AmCare staff, which consists of certified emergency medical technicians (EMTs), evaluates the condition of the patient and recommends further, outside treatment if needed.
Post-Injury Employee Woes
If a workers’ compensation claim is necessary, Amazon workers often struggle to recover benefits. Additionally, employees who need to take time off to recover are not granted the time they need, or face retaliation for filing a claim. A report from The Guardian included cases such as “a private investigator who conducted surveillance… to try to disprove injury claims,” and a non-warehouse employee (a human resources executive) who was denied disability payments and time off, and eventually “resigned from Amazon under the impression it would be easier to fill his drug prescription and health benefits if he no longer tried to fight Amazon through appeals.”
Amazon’s mistreatment of their employees exhibits gross violations of their rights as workers. Workers have a right to receive prompt medical care and, if necessary, benefits and recovery time following a work injury. If you were injured on the job, contact Alvandi Law Group, P.C. to learn about your rights.
For a free evaluation of your case, call (800) 980-6905 or submit your contact information to reach our team.