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Amazon is giving wage increases to warehouse workers across the country

Amazon is handing out pay raises and new benefits to its warehouse workers across the country. Amazon said its average starting salary is now $19 an hour, down from $18. Warehouse workers now earn between $16 and $26 an hour, depending on position and location.

Amazon’s new benefit, Anytime Pay, gives workers instant access to their payroll any time of the month. The online retail giant is also looking to advance the careers of its employees through the Amazon Intelligence Initiative, which will place 300,000 employees in a 12-14 month development program to place them in leadership roles. AWS engineering.

The news comes as some Amazon workers seek to unionize and that the company faces criticism over working conditions in its warehouses. A 2021 study showed that Amazon workers are seriously injured at twice the rate other warehouses. Four Amazon warehouse workers have died in separate incidents this summer, which prompted a US Department of Labor investigation.

Earlier in September, Amazon expressed condolences to the families of the deceased. “Each of these tragic incidents has greatly impacted our teams, and we are providing resources to families and employees in need,” Amazon spokesman Sam Stephenson said at the time. “Our investigations are ongoing and we are cooperating with OSHA, which is conducting its own reviews of the events, as it often does in these situations.”

Amazon said the rise in workplace injuries was due in part to the pandemic, which has led the company to hire tens of thousands more workers. Injured warehouse workers have also complained of encounter difficulties in obtaining benefits and treatments covered by Amazon.

“We take the health and safety of our team seriously and, while we are not perfect, we do not believe that these few anecdotes represent the experience of our more than one million frontline employees,” Amazon previously said in a statement to CNET. “When a member of our team has an issue, we work hard to address their unique concerns, including issues with pay, benefits, or accommodations.”

In July, other warehouse workers at Amazon, Illinois, reportedly complained about the company allowing racism and death threats against black employees in the workplace. Amazon said it “works hard to protect our employees from any form of discrimination.”

Amazon is also under investigation by a congressional committee over fears that workers will remain in unsafe conditions, following the deaths of six workers who were killed when a tornado hit an Amazon warehouse near Saint-Louis in December.

The company has also faced allegations of insufficient precautions around COVID-19 and inadequate restroom breaks for warehouse workers.

Read more: Amazon deaths under investigation as warehouse conditions come under scrutiny


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