Jeff Bezos, CEO of Amazon
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Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos has turned down a motion to raise income inequality issues before the Senate Budget Committee, the company told CNBC.
Senator Bernie Sanders, an independent Vermonter and chairman of the Senate Budgets Committee, invited Bezos to appear before the committee for a hearing on income inequality scheduled for March 17.
Bezos was criticized by Sanders and other lawmakers for its labor practices during the coronavirus pandemic, including ending hazard payment for frontline workers while Amazon was one of the greatest beneficiaries of the e-commerce boom triggered by the pandemic.
“I invited Jeff Bezos to testify on the Budgets Committee next week to explain to the American people why they think it is appropriate to spend a fair amount of money denying workers economic dignity to Amazon workers as he goes along The pandemic has become $ 78 billion richer, “wrote Sanders in a tweet.
A frequent critic of Amazon, Sanders has previously scanned the company for wage differentials between its top managers and employees who select packages, package and deliver to customers’ doorsteps. Following criticism from Sanders and other proponents of the work, Amazon in 2018 announced it would raise its minimum wage to $ 15 an hour.
An Amazon spokesperson told CNBC in a statement that the company supported Sanders efforts to raise the federal minimum wage. “We wholeheartedly support Senator Sanders’ efforts to reduce income inequality through legislation to raise the federal minimum wage for all workers to $ 15 an hour, as we did for ours in 2018,” the spokesman said.
Sanders has also expressed support for employees at the Amazon warehouse in Bessemer, Alabama, who are currently voting on whether to join the retail, wholesale and department stores union. The efforts were also confirmed by several democratic lawmakers, Republican Senator Marco Rubio and President Joe Biden.
Amazon has spoken out strongly against the union efforts. Compulsory meetings were held with workers at the Bessemer facility last month in which the case against union formation was presented. The company also launched a website calling on employees to “do without fees”.