Amazon doubling overtime pay for warehouse workers

Amazon doubling overtime pay for warehouse workers
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Amazon said it will double the overtime pay for warehouse workers as the coronavirus pandemic has increased demand for online orders, the company announced Saturday. 

Hourly workers in Amazon’s U.S. warehouses who work over 40 hours will receive double, instead of 1.5-times, pay between March 15 and May 9, according to an announcement obtained by Reuters.

“My own time and thinking is now wholly focused on COVID-19 and on how Amazon can best play its role,” Jeff BezosJeffrey (Jeff) Preston BezosHillicon Valley: Trump's Facebook ban to stay in place, board rules | Facebook board's Trump decision pleases no one | Republicans float support for antitrust reform Republicans urge probe into Amazon government cloud-computing bid: report SpaceX's Elon Musk has become the coolest capitalist of them all MORE said in an online announcement.


Bezos also said Amazon has ordered “millions” of face masks for its staff. But because of their short supply, masks are going to “highest-need facilities” like hospitals as directed by the government. 

“When our turn for masks comes, our first priority will be getting them in the hands of our employees and partners working to get essential products to people,” he said

The company announced a pay increase less than a week ago for hourly associates from $15 an hour to $17. It also said it will hire 100,000 warehouse and delivery workers in the U.S. as many practice social distancing by staying in their homes.

Amazon has also implemented unlimited unpaid time off designed for employees who fall ill during the pandemic. The first warehouse employee in the U.S. tested positive for COVID-19, leading for the entire facility to be shut down in New York.

Sens. Cory BookerCory BookerIn honor of Mother's Day, lawmakers should pass the Momnibus Act Bush testifies before Congress about racist treatment Black birthing people face during childbirth, pregnancy Tim Scott sparks buzz in crowded field of White House hopefuls MORE (D-N.J.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersThe Memo: Outrage rises among liberals over Israel On The Money: Biden says workers can't turn down job and get benefits | Treasury launches state and local aid | Businesses jump into vax push Symone Sanders 'hurt' at being passed over for press secretary: report MORE (I-Vt.), Bob MenendezRobert (Bob) MenendezJuan Williams: A breakthrough on immigration? Biden rebuffs Democrats, keeps refugee admissions at 15,000 Bottom line MORE (D-N.J.) and Sherrod BrownSherrod Campbell BrownSherrod Brown calls Rand Paul 'kind of a lunatic' for not wearing mask On The Money: How demand is outstripping supply and hampering recovery | Montana pulls back jobless benefits | Yellen says higher rates may be necessary Senate Democrats announce B clean bus plan MORE (D-Ohio) sent a letter to Bezos on Friday, warning the company has not done enough to protect its workers during the pandemic. 

Menendez reportedly praised the double overtime pay initiative but said the company needed to do more, according to Reuters.