A French court ordered Amazon to limit all its deliveries in the country to essential products during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The ruling gives Amazon 24 hours to comply with the new restrictions, which would limit the online retailer to the delivery of food, hygiene products and medical supplies.
According to the Paris court, Amazon “has not recognized its obligations regarding the safety and health of its workers”.
The court found that Amazon had failed to recognize its obligations regarding the safety and health of its workers, “and said that the company would be fined $ 1.1 million (one million euros ) per day for non-compliance
If the company does not comply with the decision, it could be fined up to $ 1.1 million (one million euros) per day, according to a BBC report.
An Amazon spokesperson said the company was “puzzled” by the decision.
“Our interpretation suggests that we may be forced to suspend the operation of our distribution centers in France,” the company said in a statement to Bloomberg.
“The court has given categories that are very general and create an ambiguity that would be too difficult to implement, it is a complex undertaking to manage.”
In an internal memo, Amazon suggested closing its distribution centers in France for an initial period of five days while looking for ways to proceed.
According to union representatives, workers at six Amazon facilities have been informed of a temporary layoff, during which they will continue to receive their full wages.
“We think this is good news,” said Julien Vincent of the CFDT union, which represents Amazon logistics workers.
The lawsuit against Amazon’s French operations was originally filed by the Solidaires Unitaires Démocratiques union, which said the company was forcing workers to operate under dangerous conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“This will give us time to negotiate more seriously and improve health security measures. The employees are part-time workers but paid 100%, the company told us. We have to focus on our working conditions. “
The lawsuit against Amazon was originally filed by the French union Solidaires Unitaires Démocratiques on behalf of 100 Amazon workers who he said were forced to work under conditions that violated basic social distancing protocols.
According to a CFDT estimate, between 30 and 40 percent of the company’s total workforce in France has stopped reporting for work, either for fear of contracting COVID-19 in the company’s warehouses, or because that they did not have the necessary childcare resources during the country’s school closings.
Several hundred Amazon workers in the country held strikes in March, which helped draw public attention to the issue.
Amazon has denied the claims, saying it has implemented more aggressive cleaning policies for its warehouses and has ensured that “employees can keep the necessary distance from each other.”
The company has promised to start distributing face masks to all warehouse staff at its European and American facilities, as well as to start checking the temperature of all of its employees daily.
AMAZON MANAGER, 35 YEARS, BECOMES THE FIRST EMPLOYEE TO DIE FROM CORONAVIRUS
Gerard Tuzara was previously a US Air Force officer before starting work at Amazon
Gerard Tuzara is the first known Amazon employee to die from the disease.
Tuzara, an Air Force veteran, worked as director of operations at Amazon’s facility in Hawthorne, near LAX airport.
The 35-year-old man is said to have died on March 31.
A week later, in Mexico, he started to experience flu-like symptoms and was hospitalized, Amazon confirmed to DailyMail.com on Tuesday.
It is not known exactly where Tuzara first contracted the disease.
His death was announced when an increasing number of complaints were made to the company above the level at which the company provides safety protections for workers in its warehouses and delivery people.
It was revealed Tuesday that Amazon fired three other workers who spoke out on the company’s pandemic working conditions.
One of Tuzara’s friends wrote a tribute which was posted in the warehouse where he worked.
“Gerry was a loving Air Force officer, husband, son and uncle,” the letter said. “We will miss him very much. “