Bernie Sanders Launches Investigation Into Amazon

Senator is probing working conditions at the e-commerce giant
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 21, 2023 1:00 AM CDT
Bernie Sanders Launches Amazon Probe
Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt., chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions Committee listens during a hearing on Capitol Hill in Washington Thursday, June 8, 2023.   (AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

Bernie Sanders announced Tuesday that the Senate committee he chairs has launched a probe into working conditions at Amazon's warehouses. The senator said the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, or HELP, will be looking into why Amazon is "one of the most dangerous places" to work in America, the Guardian reports. Among the issues the committee will investigate, according to a letter Sanders sent Amazon CEO Andy Jassy that was obtained by the Washington Post: the e-commerce giant's "systematically underreported” injury rates, worker turnover rates, productivity targets for employees, and how federal and state safety recommendations are being adhered to.

“The company’s quest for profits at all costs has led to unsafe physical environments, intense pressure to work at unsustainable rates, and inadequate medical attention for tens of thousands of Amazon workers every year,” Sanders wrote in the letter. The AP notes this is "the latest in a series of probes he’s initiated against big corporations" since taking over the committee chair position in January; other entities include Starbucks and Moderna. An Amazon spokesperson says the letter was received and is being reviewed, but that the company disagrees with Sanders' claims. "There will always be ways to improve, but we’re proud of the progress we’ve made, which includes a 23% reduction in recordable injuries across our US operations since 2019," he says, adding that Sanders is always welcome to visit a warehouse. Sanders is asking Amazon workers to submit their stories here. (More Amazon stories.)

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