Amazon has confirmed that another warehouse worker tested positive for COVID-19 — the coronavirus — earlier this month. This case comes from a fulfillment center in Indianapolis, Indiana. The company said that it is doing everything it can for the person.
Amazon revealed the news of its latest coronavirus case to Indianapolis newspaper The Indy Star. It said that it informed other employees at the same location about the positive test, and that those who came in close contact with the infected person have been asked to self-isolate at home for 14 days. The employees will be paid during that time.
"We are supporting the individual who is recovering, read a public statement from Amazon. "We are following guidelines from health officials and medical experts, and are taking extreme measures to ensure the safety of employees at our site."
Amazon added that it has also implemented preventative health measures for employees to combat the coronavirus threat. It has rearranged break rooms to keep people further apart, and has hand sanitizer available throughout its facilities.
Cleaning is now done more regularly throughout Amazon warehouses, as well, with target areas including door handles, stairway handrails, elevator buttons, lockers and touch screens, according to the company. Employees are not only encouraged, but required to clean their own work stations at the beginning and end of every shift.
The company boasted other measures as well, such as eliminating shift meetings, staggering break times to have less people in the break rooms, and smaller training sessions to reduce the risk. The normally high-security warehouses have even suspended screenings at the entrances and exits to the building to speed up foot traffic and keep people from jamming up doorways.
As for employees, Amazon is giving anyone diagnosed with COVID-19 two weeks of pay while they are off from work for quarantine. The company is also giving all its workings unlimited unpaid time off so that they do not feel pressured to come in when they are not able.
All of this has not saved Amazon from having positive cases of COVID-19 at nearly a dozen warehouses around the country. It has also not satisfied some employees — on Monday, workers in a New York facility walked off the job in strike, demanding better working conditions.0comments
Meanwhile, through all these measures Amazon has had to go back on its promise of 2-day shipping, and is out of stock of many items. The company is prioritizing "essential" items during the pandemic, ensuring that customers have access to cleaning supplies, food and other household needs.
For the latest information on the coronavirus pandemic, visit the CDC's website.