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States are calling on Amazon to provide updates for coronavirus health and safety precautions it has put into place for both workers at warehouses and Whole Foods store locations, after reports of inadequate personal protections, paid sick leave policies and other issues.
A group of thirteen state attorneys general signed onto a letter requesting more detailed information on measures the two companies have taken to strengthen their worker protection policies.
Specifically, state officials brought up concerns regarding coronavirus developments at Whole Foods stores and allegations of retaliation against employees who raise concerns.
“Amazon and Whole Foods must take every possible step to protect their employees and customers during the COVID-19 pandemic,” Massachusetts AG Maura Healey said in a statement. “We again call on these companies to provide assurances that they are complying with state laws and federal guidance aimed at keeping essential workers safe during this crisis.”
The states are asking for detailed information on coronavirus infections and fatalities, as well as for the pair of companies to extend their unlimited paid sick leave paid leave policies.
In response, an Amazon spokesperson told FOX Business that it remains committed to ensuring a clean and safe workplace.
“We’ve implemented over 150 significant process changes—from enhanced cleaning and social distancing measures to new efforts like disinfectant spraying,” the spokesperson said in a statement. “We’ve also distributed personal protective gear like masks across our entire operations network. We’ll continue to invest in safety, pay, and benefits for our teams who are playing an invaluable role in getting items to communities around the world.”
A spokesperson for Whole Foods did not immediately return FOX Business’s request for comment.
An initial letter was written in late-March, after which it was indicated there was a follow-up call with executives from the two companies.
Amazon and Whole Foods have been essential businesses throughout the coronavirus pandemic, delivering necessities to Americans throughout the country since lockdown measures were put into place. However, the e-commerce giant in particular has found itself in the headlines after employees across the country have protested what they have perceived as unsafe conditions given the circumstances.
Amazon has let go of at least four workers throughout recent weeks who raised concerns about workplace safety, according to Reuters. Warehouse employees have died of the virus.