American multinational tech company Amazon.com Inc (NASDAQ: AMZN), held its annual shareholders’ meeting virtually on Wednesday. It was during the meeting when CEO Jeff Bezos said the company has responded well to the COVID-19 pandemic to care for the needs of the employees. However, it seems the market was not fully convinced by the assurance as the AMZN shares are down nearly 2% in the past two days. Today, as the market opened, AMZN stock is 0.69% down, at $2,393.78.
Despite the increased sales due to the coronavirus crisis, the past one month the shares have lost over 2.50%. To keep the customers flowing, the company is promising the consumers free delivery on millions of items with Prime.
With the increased demand for its product, it only meant that the workers at the warehouses and delivery team had to step up amid the coronavirus to facilitate the sales. As the COVID-19 began being reported among the employees working at the company’s warehouses, the union representatives started pushing for better working conditions to protect the workers from contracting the virus.
The issue escalated resulting in high ranking executives quitting their jobs due to the internal differences. Organized strikes especially in New York, where the virus has infected more people in comparison to other states, have been reported, only to end up with several employees losing their jobs.
Possible Challenges for Amazon Employees
The Amazon employees who have been demanding for their rights seem to be on the receiving end as a report from crowdsourced data shows an increase in infection rate among workers. According to the report, over 340 workers from Whole Foods have tested positive.
Besides, another researcher, Jumpp recorded around 1,079 cases of Covid-19 victims among warehouse workers as of Wednesday. With such a high number, the possibilities of more unnoticed persons could be on the list of Amazon warehouse workers.
However, the company has not been open with the public on the total number of warehouse workers infected with the coronavirus so far. According to Amazon spokesperson, Amazon does track the information at a site level but does not release the aggregate numbers. The reason given is because the number might probably have resolved cases and hence misinforming the public.
“The total number of infections in warehouses isn’t particularly useful,” said Dave Clark, Amazon senior vice president of global operations.
To Bezos, the company has delivered well both to investors, employees and also its employees. During the meeting, he commended the workers for the sacrifice they make to deliver the high demand sales. “I’m proud of the job the team has done there. We have taken the coronavirus seriously from the very beginning,” he said.