Instacart workers nationwide, as well as Amazon warehouse workers in Staten Island, walked off their jobs on Monday to demand higher pay and better protections while working amid the coronavirus crisis. NPR reports that employees and gig workers at both companies want increased access to paid sick leave.
In addition, Instacart workers want the company to pony up for disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer to help keep them safe while they shop for customers, while the Amazon employees want guaranteed pay while warehouses are closed for longer cleanings. The strikes come as both companies have said they plan to hire tens of thousands of new workers to meet demand for delivered goods and groceries as people stay home and self-isolate.
“Actions speak louder than words,” says Instacart worker Sarah Polito. “You can tell us that we’re these household heroes and that you appreciate us. But you’re not actually, they’re not showing it. They’re not taking these steps to give us the precautions. They’re not giving us hazard pay.”