Sunday Mirror investigation does over Amazon

This weekend’s Sunday Mirror newspaper has exposed difficult working conditions for the Amazon Tilbury fulfilment centre employees.

While the working conditions do not break any laws, the investigative journalist, who spent five weeks at Amazon’s LCY2 fulfilment centre, found that ambulances were called regularly to help exhausted workers, staff falling asleep on their feet, and that staff regularly walked more than 10 miles on a shift.

The mirror investigation reported, “With my secret camera, I documented colleagues snatching a moment to rest their aching feet when supervisors could not see them. Less lucky ones were told off after being caught taking a breather. Some simply slept where they stood.”

FC staff supervision is intense. There were a number of sackings before Black Friday due to staff not reaching very high standards that were usually measured in terms of timing between tasks. In one role the journalist reported, “Alone in a locked metal cage, 10 feet from my nearest colleague, a robot approaches from the shadows and thrusts a tower of shelves towards me. I have nine seconds to grab and process an item to be sent for packing – a target of 300 items an hour, for hour after relentless hour.”

While the pressure was high and the journalist believed to be difficult there was so suggestion that Amazon was in breach off any Health & Safety or employment law.

Amazon responded to the Mirror in a statement, “Amazon provides a safe and positive workplace with competitive pay and benefits from day one. We are proud to have created thousands of permanent roles in our UK fulfilment centres in recent years.

“We offer great jobs and a positive environment with opportunities for growth. As with most companies, we expect a certain level of performance.

“Targets are based on previous performance achieved by our workers. Associates are evaluated over a long period of time as we know a variety of things could impact the ability to meet expectations in any given day or hour.”
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