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Amazon's Abuse of Labor in its Fulfillment Centers

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Showing 26-50 of 52 posts in this discussion
In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2012 8:38:22 AM PDT
Firefly says:
Aluminum Foil Deflector Beanie: Practical Mind Control Protection for Paranoids

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2012 9:13:24 AM PDT
Lientje says:
I'll bet you're a Republican. I'll also bet you don't do that kind of labor.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2012 1:33:17 PM PDT
You'll lose your bet because I'm a Democrat.

And I used to have a physically demanding job, but I realized I wouldn't be able to do that kind of work until I retired, and I knew that no one has an obligation to hire me, or keep me employed in a job that I'm no longer capable of doing, so I chose a new path before I had to.

Employers aren't social service agencies. They don't owe you a job.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2012 8:40:13 PM PDT
RAK says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Apr 19, 2012 10:18:56 PM PDT
If you keep repeating a mantra of "it's only a few lazy, disgruntled workers," you can hypnotize yourself and you won't get confused with the facts.

Here's the problem: It *IS* just a few stories from disgruntled workers. The quantitative facts do not show their issues as anything but edge cases on the bell curve.

You can choose to look at that trailing end of the bell curve, and decide that it represents the whole story. You'd be wrong, but you're certainly welcome to continue to do so.

But just because you only acknowledge one of the tail ends of the bell curve doesn't mean the rest of the curve doesn't exist.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 20, 2012 4:42:33 AM PDT
RAK says:
You keep repeating the mantra that it "IS" just a few. Any objective, external, reliable sources to back this up with quantitative evidence? I would love to go back to Amazon Prime with a clear conscience.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 20, 2012 10:42:55 AM PDT
All we've got is anecdotes from a handful of people who aren't in a position to be objective, and the reports from state inspections which show that no place is perfect, but objective state inspectors quoted saying things they'd never say about a dangerous environment created by an employer who doesn't care.

Even the older worker who was no longer capable of doing the job stayed there for 10 years. Would anyone stay 10 years with an abusive employer? It certainly doesn't sound like she stayed there for 10 years because she didn't have other choices.

If there was quantitative evidence that it's such an abusive place to work, why didn't the reporter use it? Why did they choose to focus on the anecdotes of a few disgruntled workers, extrapolate those anecdotes as if they were the norm, and then spin what they did get from the objective inspectors, as well as toss in horror stories that happened in non-Amazon warehouses thousands of miles away?

Read the stories objectively, and try not to let the blatant attempts to get an emotional response from readers influence you and it's pretty clear that these stories are isolated, overblown anecdotes packaged in a way to get an emotional response, and not a true representation of the conditions.

Bad things happen even at good jobs. I don't believe that Amazon is, or ever claimed to be the perfect place to work, but it is not an abusive hellhole that a few disgruntled workers believe it is, either. It's a hard job, and the performance standards are not based on the lowest common denominator. It's not a job for everyone, and while those who it isn't may see it as abusive from their perspective, there is no objective evidence that it is anywhere close to abusive.

Posted on Apr 23, 2012 1:04:02 PM PDT
I urge to immediately end your relationship with ALEC.

In reply to an earlier post on Apr 23, 2012 1:17:10 PM PDT
@W. Hershberger/ Now there's something I can get behind. Amazon's labor abuses are only one of myriad reasons why consumers should reconsider whenever they're about to click "add to cart."

Posted on May 2, 2012 4:29:19 PM PDT
If they don't like it, they could find another J-O-B. There are many in the US right now that are jobless and would be quite happy with any job!

In reply to an earlier post on May 3, 2012 7:53:15 AM PDT
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Posted on May 3, 2012 9:24:06 PM PDT
Old Rocker says:
Heaven forbid that anyone has to work without A/C like our grandparents did.

In reply to an earlier post on May 4, 2012 5:32:19 AM PDT
If you would have read the articles that have been written about Amazon's warehouses, you would see that there is much more to the story than lack of AC. I worked through the heat and that is at the bottom of my list of grievances. Amazon is one of the most abusive employers I've ever known, in so many ways. So, read the articles, I know that my grandparents had it much better than Amazon employees and they could build a home and have a family on what they earned. That is certainly not the case these days and that's the problem.

In reply to an earlier post on May 5, 2012 2:24:48 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 5, 2012 2:27:03 PM PDT
RAK says:
As Nicole Gracely has said so well, the problem is not simply the heat. The problem is the dehumanization of the workers, the stripping them of their dignity. All warehouse work is fast and hard; but UPS and FedEx (for examples) seem to have invented fast and reliable shipping via warehouses and most people I know would give a lot to get a job there because they are not just Bic pens to be used up and disposed of. And there are lots of other business models out there that Amazon could adopt without any significant hit at the bottom line.

Why should anyone be defending the policies of any company that strip workers of their dignity? Aren't we real, live human beings who can suffer physically and emotionally? Is that what having a job is about? The inhumane version of capitalism defended here went out after the Robber Barons and the Social Darwinists of the 19th century. Now companies are simply taking advantage of people desperate for a job. Another word for this is exploitation. I hope that Bezos someday has to work under the same conditions that he inflicts on his employees, and without a mansion to return to with a masseur after work.

Posted on May 9, 2012 8:16:32 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on May 9, 2012 8:24:25 PM PDT
Xena says:
This is Amazon & its employees internal problem, they should try to solve the problem among themselves. If the employees think they are not treated fairly, abused, etc. etc., they should look for another place to work, end of the story.
I will continue to shop at Amazon , I dont like anyone telling me not to shop at Amazon. This is a free each his own.

In reply to an earlier post on May 10, 2012 6:46:08 AM PDT
You go on and shop until your little heart's content. Amazon has squashed every employee attempt to form a union and, to tell you the truth sweetheart, everything is non-negotiable there and workers don't have any voice or ability to transform Amazon FCs into a fair workplace.

Free country, sweetheart. Well, clearly you have disposable income and therefore feel so free here. Good for you. Maybe if you fall on hard times you'll lose your callous attitude. America is free to fall apart and that's just what we're doing. Shop shop ... I don't work there anymore.

Posted on May 10, 2012 7:56:56 PM PDT
Xena says:
" Nichole Gracely says: I don't work there anymore. "

What is your problem ? You no longer work there but you are still bitching about Amazon ? Dont you have other things to do cause you spent too much time posting your grievances here ? Enjoy your new freedom and your new job, forget about Amazon . You are smart for leaving the company, I am sure your new employer has better working condition than Amazon. Good luck to you .

In reply to an earlier post on May 15, 2012 11:33:09 AM PDT
John Taylor says:
When you say "published reports", are you talking about newspaper articles or actual government reports on abuse? News stories can be, and often are, slanted to bias the reader's opinion. I take news reports with a grain of salt; on ANY subject and from ANY source.

In reply to an earlier post on May 15, 2012 12:08:11 PM PDT
I've read all of the newspaper articles that detailed labor abuse in Amazon's fulfillment centers and I can tell you that they are remarkably accurate. I worked through the conditions that were exposed and the reporters did not inject the stories with any misleading biases. They listened to workers' stories and told it straight. Government reports? You honestly think that the government cares about the well-being of workers and that their reports are unbiased?

Posted on May 21, 2012 3:58:31 AM PDT
Jackie T says:
@Nichole and/or RAK Hey, here's an idea. instead of all this "it's abuse!" and "no it's not!" why don't you two post some ideas for solving the issue, instead of just trying to rally for complete anarchy? :p

How would you improve conditions while maintaining economic growth?

In reply to an earlier post on May 21, 2012 7:20:45 PM PDT
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Posted on May 22, 2012 3:58:13 AM PDT
Jackie T says:
Mhmm. I've read your posts, and you seem to be a very intelligent woman. I think you're capable of bringing changes, you just need to be heard by the right people. I'm sure you have ideas, and just need a chance to express them.

I don't know if any amazon personel read these (I doubt it given some topics that are allowed to exist), but I wouldn't give up trying open dialogue with them. Just not here, since most people aren't really interested in civil debate, as we can see. :/

In reply to an earlier post on May 22, 2012 2:27:44 PM PDT
Yes, dialogue is essential. The two links I've provided feature two personal attempts to open up the discussion.

In reply to an earlier post on May 28, 2012 11:29:40 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 28, 2012 2:10:27 PM PDT]

In reply to an earlier post on May 28, 2012 11:35:54 AM PDT
[Deleted by Amazon on May 28, 2012 12:05:05 PM PDT]
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Participants:  15
Total posts:  52
Initial post:  Apr 6, 2012
Latest post:  May 28, 2012

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