Pennsauken, NJ (Law Firm Newswire) July 15, 2019 – A coalition of labor advocacy groups in New Jersey released a report raising concerns about the treatment of warehouse workers and working conditions at Amazon and other large retailers.
Thousands of employees work in New Jersey at dozens of warehouse distribution centers. Amazon operates many of the warehouses, but other retailers, like Costco and Office Depot, have centers across the state. With New Jersey’s ports and easy access to New York City’s large consumer market, the warehouse distribution sector continues to grow. Concerns about the safety and treatment of workers at the warehouses surfaced after an accident at an Amazon warehouse and a report from a worker coalition.
A robot at an Amazon warehouse distribution center in Robbinsville, New Jersey, caused a can of bear repellant to explode. Over 50 workers were exposed to fumes, 24 workers went to hospitals, and one worker was seriously injured. In 2016, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration fined Amazon $7,000 for failing to report 25 work-related injuries and illnesses at its New Jersey workplaces.
A week after the bear-repellant incident, Warehouse Workers Stand Up, a coalition of labor advocacy groups in New Jersey, released a report examining the workforce inside New Jersey warehouse distribution centers. The report relates the use of part-time, seasonal and temporary workers and describes workers as performing at “breakneck speed under grueling, exploitative and often unsafe conditions.”
The report suggests the adoption of a Code of Conduct to establish a uniform set of standards for job quality and workplace conditions in warehouse distribution centers in New Jersey. The Code of Conduct lists 10 items, including a living wage, regular full-time employment and a safe workplace.
Working at a warehouse distribution center? Talk to a workplace lawyer at Petrillo and Goldberg at 856.249.9295 or visit https://www.petrilloandgoldberg.com.
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