Activists painted a mural outside the Washington home of Amazon owner Jeff Bezos on April 29 to demand improved protections for the company’s employees, local media reported.
The Washington Post, which Bezos owns, said, “Neighbors paused to take pictures of the message or marvel at the red silhouettes of masked workers drawn on the ground.”
The mural said, “Protect Amazon Workers.”
“At the top of the mural the activists are painting silhouettes of masked workers,” Marissa Lang, a Washington Post reporter, said on Twitter. “The group is calling for CEOs like Jeff Bezos to do more to provide adequate PPE to employees, independent contractors and delivery drivers — all of whom are deemed essential workers,” she added.
The Washington Post said Amazon has responded to the criticism by handing out masks to warehouse workers and checking the temperatures of employees as they begin shifts. The company also increased pay for hourly workers in the country by $2 through the end of this month.
In response to these measures, activists said independent contractors and other workers on whom the company relies are not being adequately protected.
“We urge others to compare the safety, pay and benefits measures we have taken for employees against other [companies],” said Amazon spokeswoman Lisa Levandowski. “Whether it’s temperature checks, getting masks to all employees and partners, to gloves, procuring necessary cleaning supplies, to moving fast to shift social distancing in our sites, we have aggressively worked to ensure the safety of our teams.”
In this video, a group of activists can be seen painting the mural on the street. The mural was later removed. Credit: Shutdown DC via Storyful