In the wake of Amazon making drastic changes to its online retail amid the coronavirus pandemic, a new petition is urging the company to offer its employees more paid time off in the meantime. The Change.org petition, which as of Tuesday night has just under 250,000 signatures, is directed both at Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, as well as Whole Foods CEO John Mackey.
The petition's website specifies an email sent out to employees of Whole Foods, which is owned by Amazon, offering a rundown of all the benefits and other options that are available should they fall sick during coronavirus. The sticking point, however, was that one of the email's six suggestions was an option for employees to "donate" their paid time off to other co-workers who may be facing medical emergencies.
"Given that Whole Foods is owned by Amazon, one of the most valuable corporations in the world, owned by Jeff Bezos, the wealthiest person on earth, it is incomprehensible that better conditions are not granted to Whole Foods' employees," read the statement, in part. "We implore Jeff Bezos to provide his employees or 'associates' with better working conditions and paid medical leave during this national health crisis and beyond."
As the petition continues to gain steam, more than a few people weighed in on the Change.org site, not to mention the rest of social media, as well.
@JeffBezos: You're the richest man in the world. The LEAST you can do is give Whole Foods staff the paid medical leave they deserve during this crisis. 200,000 have signed so far - add your name https://t.co/tkMCkncfGd— Benny Oke (@Bennyoke) March 18, 2020
"This [is] the time for corporate America to step up and help those who work day and night to keep them in business," wrote one signer. "They must do what's necessary to put some of those outlandish profits they have made off the backs of the working class back in their hands."
"Jeff is loaded. Where is his heart as a human," asked another.
As always the trickledown will not work. Look at the way Whole Foods is asking for solidarity of its employees but doesn't pitch in a few billions that Jeff bezos could easily do without. Maybe have the top 1% make an emergency tax contribution or better have them pay their taxes— Filiep Samyn (@vrijmetselaar56) March 18, 2020
"I'm signing because I'm tired of the working people being told to sacrifice while the bazillionaires just keep getting obscenely richer."
"Bezos is rich because of people that work to make him successful and those who use 'his' services. That's despicable to just leave the workers to suffer the loss alone. There's always other 'worker bees' right, Jeff?"
And then you have billionaires like @JeffBezos telling Whole Foods employees to donate their sick time leave to each other...Glad to see there are still amazing humans willing to do good during tough times 🙏🏼 https://t.co/KvC3hl8U8W— J (@JazzyBju) March 18, 2020
"Really, Jeff Bezos? You can afford to give ALL your employees paid sick leave. Step up and use some of your wealth to help the folks who make that money for you."
"Come on Whole Foods! You are known for quality products and awesome teams. Match it with some decency during trying times and keep your employees' dignity intact."
210,000 signatures and counting
Already, more than 210,000 people have signed this petition calling on @JeffBezos, the richest man in the world, to provide paid medical leave to @WholeFoods staff during the COVID-19 crisis.#CoronavirusOutbreak#COVID19— ZaRdOz420WPN (@ZaRdOz420WPN) March 18, 2020
"All American workers deserve paid sick time and family leave."
"Asking people to donate their time off is bullsh—! And if anyone can afford to give a little to the people who maintain his 'wealthiest man' status, it's Bezos."
"If a corporation can afford to pay their sick employees during this crisis they should definitely do so. Please do NOT allow corporate greed to rule your heart. Do the right thing!"
"Amazon shows once again that it is a profoundly amoral company, driven by greed and a quest for power no matter the impact on individuals and communities."
But he won't because the longer the pandemic goes on the more money he makes.March 18, 2020
"No amount of two-day shipping is worth risking the health of my fellow Americans. Humanity will crumble if we don't do everything we can right now to halt the spread of coronavirus. Give your employees the resources they need to stay healthy."
"Jeff Bezos could personally pay the lost salaries of all of his employees and not even miss the money! What a despicably greedy individual!"