Injured former Amazon warehouse workers and activists recently protested in downtown Chicago in response to a report that Amazon has more than double the industry average of injuries at its fulfillment centers.
Amazon Injuries Far Exceed Industry Average
On December 10, 2019, Warehouse Workers for Justice protested outside of an Amazon Go store at 144 S. Clark St. The protest came on the heels of a November 25 report from the nonprofit Center for Investigative Reporting. That organization reviewed internal injury records from twenty-three of Amazon’s 110 fulfillment centers across the United States. Its investigation found that the rate of serious injury at those facilities was more than double the national average for the warehouse industry.
Activists with Warehouse Workers for Justice said they had obtained safety records from the Amazon fulfillment plant in Monee, IL. According to the group, the records demonstrated that, for all of 2018, forty workers at the Monee center suffered injuries so severe that they were unable to work at their jobs, with twenty-five employees injured during the holiday season alone.
Use of Automated Robots Increasing Rate of Injuries
Amazon’s Monee facility, known as MDW7, is alleged to be one of the Midwest’s largest and most dangerous warehouses, the first in Illinois with automated robots. Roberto J. Clack, a spokesman for Warehouse Workers for Justice, explained that Amazon’s use of automated robots at its warehouses to handle the high volume of goods increases the rate of injuries.
“The push for faster and faster deliveries comes with a price,” said Clack, “a price paid through the injuries of local workers.”
The report and protest coincided with the launch of a national coalition of three dozen labor, antitrust, and digital rights organizations known as Athena. Warehouse Workers for Justice, which organizes warehouse workers in the Chicago area, is one of the founding members of Athena, the first unified resistance effort against Amazon in the United States.
Amazon warehouse employees in Minnesota, New York, and California have also staged actions against the company in recent months.
Lawyers Helping Injured Workers in Illinois
Whether they are employed by a corporate giant like Amazon or by a much smaller company, Illinois workers who get injured on the job are entitled to certain benefits under the state’s workers’ compensation laws. But unless employees can present the full extent of the damages they incurred as a result of their work injuries, they may not receive fair compensation. To help ensure that they do, injured workers frequently turn to the Chicago workers’ compensation attorneys at GWC Injury Lawyers LLC.
With over $2 billion recovered for our clients and offices throughout Illinois, GWC is one of the state’s leading Workers’ Compensation and Personal Injury law firms. For more than four decades, we have been getting injured employees and their families the justice they deserve.
If you have been hurt performing the duties of your job in Illinois, please contact GWC today to schedule a free, no-obligation consultation with one of our attorneys. You may call our office at (312) 464-1234 or click here to chat with a representative at any time.