The Committee on Workers’ Capital (CWC), released a report for investors on the implications of COVID-19 for Amazon and its workforce. The CWC´s briefing highlights widespread reports of issues in health and safety precautions and heavy workloads that are prompting workers to demand improved conditions in Italy, France, Spain, Germany, the UK, and across the United States.
The briefing also provides a set of recommendations for companies to follow during the pandemic, developed in consultation with occupational and public health experts. These include ensuring workers’ rights and restricting activity to only essential goods and services.
“We have seen the grave health and safety concerns at Amazon mounting over the past weeks,” said Christy Hoffman General Secretary of UNI Global Union. “Amazon’s response has failed to address these concerns, instead punishing the brave workers who raise them. Investors in Amazon will have serious questions on how the company plans to meet best practices – including respect for workers’ rights – to ensure it keeps the workforce and the public safe.”
The report also calls on investors to consider how they can address risks, in line with investors’ own human rights responsibilities under the OECD Guidelines and the potential operational, regulatory, and reputational risks for Amazon that could ultimately undermine the company’s social license to operate.
The Committee on Workers’ Capital is an international labour union network for dialogue and action on the responsible investment of workers capital that connects labour activists and asset owner board members from around the world to promote information sharing and joint action in the field of workers’ capital. UNI Global Union participates in the CWC’s Network Secretariat.