I mostly concur with the article “Halifax not ready for Amazon headquarters” in the Herald on Sept. 21. But I agree for different reasons.
In reading about the Amazon warehouse in Fernley, Nevada, I discovered that the pay in 2014 was $12.25 per hour, or $12.71 per hour in today’s dollars. The workers who shelve in-bound freight in the giant warehouse spend ten or more hours a day walking, stopping and pushing carts on a concrete slab floor. There are no windows, few doors, and the work gives way to repetitive strain injuries, back problems and exhaustion. Jim Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, once famously said, “You can work long, hard or smart, but at Amazon.com you can’t choose two out of three.”
About their own jobs, some workers claim, “If you’re a good Amazonian, you become an Amabot,” – that means you have become a cog in a wheel or “at one with the system”.
In 2011, employees at an Amazon fulfillment centre in Pennsylvania had to work in 100 degree (F) heat. Ambulances lined up outside– waiting to take away anyone who passed out. It was only after a media investigation that Amazon installed air conditioning.
Are we in Nova Scotia so desperate for jobs that we are willing to enter the bidding war for an Amazon warehouse?