Amazon Says Nearly 20,000 Employees Have Tested Positive for COVID-19

Amazon has revealed that close to 20,000 of its front-line workers have tested positive for COVID-19 amid pressure to disclose its number of cases.

Amazon logo at a logistic centre.

Image via Getty/Marcos del Mazo

Amazon logo at a logistic centre.

Amazon revealed that close to 20,000 of its front-line workers have either tested positive or been presumed positive for COVID-19.

In a blog post published Thursday, Amazon said analysis was conducted on its 1,372,000 Amazon and Whole Foods employees across the United States, and they found that between March 1 and September 19, 19,816 workers caught the virus or more than likely had it.

In an attempt to find the silver lining, the company claims their positive cases were 42 percent lower than expected when comparing their statistics with the findings reported by Johns Hopkins University in regards to the general population.

CNN reported in May that Amazon was opposed to sharing the number of coronavirus cases at its warehouses, arguing that this type of information isn't "particularly useful." However, that same month, their facility in Shakopee, Minnesota had 45 positive cases and a 1.7 percent infection rate, which was higher than the entire county and nearly four times higher than any county in the Minneapolis-St. Paul area. 

The following month, the number of cases in the Shakopee facility grew to 88, while other warehouses in Minnesota accounted for another 99 positive results. 

In May, Whole Foods CEO John Mackey and Amazon president Jeff Bezos received a letter from the attorney generals for Massachusetts, Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Washington, and the District of Columbia requesting a state-by-state breakdown of COVID-19 cases.

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