US state California’s governor Gavin Newsom recently signed a new law to regulate labour practices at warehouses in the state. “We cannot allow corporations to put profit over people. The hardworking warehouse employees who have helped sustain us during these unprecedented times should not have to risk injury or face punishment as a result of exploitative quotas that violate basic health and safety,” Newsom said in a statement.
The law requires warehouses of Amazon and other such companies to disclose quotas and work-speed metrics to employees and government agencies and prohibits penalties for stopping work to use the bathroom and other activities that affect health and safety. It also prohibits retaliation against workers who complain.
Current or former workers alleging illegal labour practices will have the ability to pursue injunctive relief, implying instead of simply suing a company to secure penalties or damages, workers who lost their jobs could file suit to try to reverse their termination.
US state California’s governor Gavin Newsom has signed a new law to regulate labour practices at warehouses. “We cannot allow corporations to put profit over people. The hardworking warehouse employees….should not have to risk injury or face punishment as a result of exploitative quotas that violate basic health and safety,” Newsom said in a statement.
Under the legislation called AB 701, if a worksite or employer is found to have “an annual employee injury rate of at least 1.5 times higher than the warehousing industry’s average annual injury rate,” California’s agency overseeing workplace health and safety is required to report that entity to the state’s labor commissioner, who will then determine whether to investigate the facility.
Amazon’s injury rate has been shown to be nearly twice that of the warehouse industry generally, according to studies cited by the Senate Judiciary Committee in its analysis of the legislation.
The proposal faced heavy opposition from retailers and other industries, which warned that if implemented, AB 701 would increase manufacturing, storage and distribution costs, which would be passed on to consumers.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DS)