Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility

Amazon Wants Warehouse Employees to Return to Work in May

By Donna Fuscaldo - Apr 27, 2020 at 11:23AM

You’re reading a free article with opinions that may differ from The Motley Fool’s Premium Investing Services. Become a Motley Fool member today to get instant access to our top analyst recommendations, in-depth research, investing resources, and more. Learn More

Employees who don't want to return to work will be able to take a leave of absence.

Amazon (AMZN 3.15%) wants warehouse workers who stayed home due to the COVID-19 pandemic to begin returning to work on May 1 or take a leave of absence. 

Since COVID-19 began spreading through the U.S. in March, the tech giant has offered unpaid time off to warehouse workers who didn't want to come in to work. Those who did show up got a $2 an hour increase in their income as hazard pay.

Masks hanging on boxes in a warehouse.


Amazon is now asking those warehouse workers to start showing up for scheduled shifts again in May, reports Bloomberg. Many had hoped to remain at home until the virus is contained and businesses begin opening again. 

In a blog late last week Amazon announced it's extending the $2 an hour raise through May 16. However, the tech giant didn't say if it will continue to offer unlimited unpaid time off. The leave will be available to full-time and part-time workers who have medical conditions, live with people who have health issues, or have no child care as schools remain closed. 

"We are providing flexibility with leave of absence options, including expanding the policy to cover COVID-19 circumstances, such as high-risk individuals or school closures," Amazon wrote in a blog post.  The eCommerce giant also said its extending double overtime pay in the U.S. and Canada through May 16. 

The move to bring warehouse workers back comes as Amazon has been contending with a huge surge in demand as people shelter at home and stores remain shuttered. That's resulted in Amazon hiring 100,000 warehouse and delivery workers in March and announcing plans to hire an additional 75,000. It has also faced criticism from some workers it hasn't done enough to protect the safety of its frontline employees. Amazon has dismissed the allegations, arguing it has taken steps to protect employees including conducting temperature checks, distributing millions of masks to employees, and instituting social distancing rules, among other things. 

Invest Smarter with The Motley Fool

Join Over 1 Million Premium Members Receiving…

  • New Stock Picks Each Month
  • Detailed Analysis of Companies
  • Model Portfolios
  • Live Streaming During Market Hours
  • And Much More
Get Started Now

Stocks Mentioned, Inc. Stock Quote, Inc.
$109.56 (3.15%) $3.35

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

Related Articles

Motley Fool Returns

Motley Fool Stock Advisor

Market-beating stocks from our award-winning analyst team.

Stock Advisor Returns
S&P 500 Returns

Calculated by average return of all stock recommendations since inception of the Stock Advisor service in February of 2002. Returns as of 07/04/2022.

Discounted offers are only available to new members. Stock Advisor list price is $199 per year.

Premium Investing Services

Invest better with The Motley Fool. Get stock recommendations, portfolio guidance, and more from The Motley Fool's premium services.