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Amazon reports that over 19,000 US frontline employees had COVID-19



(Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc. on Thursday said more than 19,000 of its U.S. frontline workers received coronavirus this year, or 1.44% of the total, a revelation sought by colleagues who have criticized COVID-19 the answer of the world's largest online retailer.

Some employees, elected officials and unions in recent months have said that Amazon is endangering the health of employees by keeping stocks open during the pandemic. Amazon said the infection rate was 42% lower than expected when considering the spread of the virus in the general population.

In a blog post, Amazon encouraged other companies to report comparable figures. It said it would expand virus testing to 50,000 US employees a day in November through internally built capacity.

The information from Amazon gives a rare look at the impact of the disease on a large American employer. Amazon has kept facilities open to meet increased demand from customers stuck at home and added temperature controls, social remote software and other security procedures.

Athena, a labor and activist coalition, urged officials to investigate Amazon and for more regular reporting from the company in light of the news. "Amazon allowed COVID-1

9 to spread like wildfire," coalition director Dania Rajendra said in a statement.

Amazon said that 19,816 tested positive or were assumed to have COVID-19 between March 1 and September 19. have been infected outside of work, it said.

On the other hand, 33,952 would have been affected by the virus if Amazon's speed corresponded to the general population, when reporting the age and geography of employees, it said.

Minnesota had the highest incidence with nearly 32 infections per 1,000 workers, compared to nearly 16 for the general public. Amazon has bumped heads with a working group there; it had no comment on the specific interest rate.

"This information would be more powerful if there were similar data from other major employers to compare it with," Amazon said in the blog post, adding that it hopes the numbers "will prove useful when states decide to open public facilities and employers are considering whether and how to bring people back to work. ”

More insurance and risk management news on the coronavirus crisis here .

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