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After walkouts, Amazon pledges temperature checks and masks in all warehouses

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Amazon has pledged new well being protections for its staff in success facilities within the US and Europe, as first reported by Reuters. Underneath the brand new system, staff will obtain a no-contact temperature test on arrival, and anybody who checks over 100.four levels Fahrenheit (38 levels Celsius) might be despatched house. Staff may also obtain surgical masks to be used whereas on the premises. The protections are deliberate to be in place by subsequent week.

The Verge can verify that warehouse staff from a minimum of two websites have been knowledgeable of the brand new protections, some as early as Tuesday.

Amazon additionally plans to watch on-site video feeds utilizing software program algorithms to make sure staff are appropriately distanced within the office, addressing earlier issues about overcrowding.

Amazon’s success groups have grown more and more involved in regards to the lack of well being protections at warehouse websites, which many imagine is placing them in danger amid an unprecedented surge in demand. At one Detroit warehouse, administration did not notify workers when a coworker examined constructive for COVID-19, and was sluggish to reply when a second worker additionally examined constructive.

Amazon has seen a sequence of escalating labor actions in response to these failures. Staff in Staten Island and Chicago have staged walkouts to demand higher well being protections, and staff in Detroit had been making ready for the same motion on Monday. Amazon didn’t reply when requested if the brand new measures had been a response to these labor actions.

The brand new protections may also prolong to the Entire Meals grocery chain, which Amazon acquired in 2017. Entire Meals staff had staged a walkout on Monday over comparable issues, additionally going through unprecedented provide chain disruption and grocery demand.

The brand new measures don’t fully shield staff from contracting COVID-19 at work, given the prevalence of asymptomatic transmission and the worldwide scarcity of extra complete protecting tools, like N95 masks. However within the absence of broadly obtainable testing, these new insurance policies symbolize a major enchancment over earlier circumstances.

Josh Dzieza contributed further reporting.

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