Life inside the "dot.com"

There was a good article in The Sunday Times yesterday that paints a pretty grim account of working for Amazon.

An undercover reporter is said to have found the following practices at work in the Amazon distribution centre in Bedfordshire:

– Warned that the company refuses to allow sick leave, even if the worker has a legitimate doctor’s note. Taking a day off sick, even with a note, results in a penalty point. A worker with six points faces dismissal.

– Made to work a compulsory 10½hour overnight shift at the end of a five-day week. The overnight shift, which runs from Saturday evening to 5am on Sunday, means they have to work every day of the week.

– Set quotas for the number of items to be picked or packed in an hour that even a manager described as “ridiculous”. Those packing heavy Xbox games consoles had to pack 140 an hour to reach their target.

– Set against each other with a bonus scheme that penalises staff if any other member of their group fails to hit the quota.

– Made to walk up to 14 miles a shift to collect items for packing.

- Given only one break of 15 minutes and another of 20 minutes per eight-hour shift and told they had to get permission to go to the toilet. Amazon said workers wanted the shorter breaks in exchange for shorter shifts.

For more details see Revealed: Amazon staff punished for being ill (Claire Newell and Daniel Foggo).

1 comment:

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