Going to work should not be scary, but for many people this is a near daily reality. This can be even more distressing when employers downplay just how dangerous their workplaces really are. Unfortunately, Amazon workers in North Carolina might already be all too familiar with the risks of working for an employer who seems to undervalue their workplace safety.
Amazon has reportedly funneled tens of millions of dollars into improving safety measures at its fulfillment centers, but that money does not seem to have done much. According to internal safety reports from Amazon itself, worker injuries have been going up ever since 2016. In 2019 alone, there were reports of 14,000 serious injuries in Amazon fulfillment centers. This comes out to 7.7 injuries for every 100 employees — about twice the industry standard.
This might not even paint the full picture, either. According to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration — OSHA — a physician who inspected multiple warehouse locations found that many workers are discouraged from reporting their injuries, and also from seeking medical care. Furthermore, an initiative intended to minimize the number of injuries that require workers to take time off of work actually made it harder to accurately count these types of injuries.
There is no such thing as a risk-free workplace, but employers should take every necessary step to protect their workers. When workplace safety is not a priority, men and women in North Carolina can suffer needlessly. Those who have been hurt at work might be understandably frustrated by their situations, but it is important to know what help is available. For example, many injured workers qualify for benefits for lost wages and medical care through the workers’ compensation system.