“Every day, people are getting injured”: Amazon workers speak out following death of 20-year old in Amazon warehouse in Indiana

Caes David Gruesbeck [Photo: Family photo]

Last week’s article in the World Socialist Web Site about the death of 20 year-old Caes David Gruesbeck at an Amazon warehouse in Fort Wayne, Indiana has generated considerable discussion. Several Amazon workers from around the country have sent in descriptions of their own experiences with safety at their Amazon facilities, a selection of which we publish below.

Amazon workers, we want to hear from you. What do you think about the death of Gruesbeck in Fort Wayne? What are conditions like in your own warehouse? Let us know by filling out the form below. All submissions will remain anonymous.

A Washington, DC-area Amazon worker: I have worked for Amazon at a different facility, and let me tell you, they don’t care about safety. I’m sure that that is the same across the country. Multiple times a day, people are getting injured. Every time, I came home with bruises and still have scars. Amazon pays their workers pennies on the dollar and have them overworked and in dangerous conditions. Join an Amazon group on Facebook and see for yourselves. At my location, we had no managers overseeing the conveyor belt sometimes and we would have hundred of packages falling at the end of it towards people, trapping them. They make us wear loose vests that always get stuck in the belt. It’s scary when that happens.

A Virginia Amazon worker: It literally breaks my heart to hear about a death that occurred in an Amazon facility. I have worked for five years at Amazon, under some of the filthiest conditions, and my complaints seem to have gone unheard. In my opinion, all of Amazon should be unionized to help protect the lives of young inexperienced workers. Safety at Amazon is deplorable. Most safety personnel have no experience and most don't obtain OSHA training. Those of us who want change welcome help.

A Chicago-area Amazon worker: MDW7 in Monee, Illinois doesn’t care about their workers. They treat us like we’re robots. We are being forced to train in several jobs with no extra pay. All the managers need to be retrained on safety. Several people have been injured, I really believe nobody knows what to do when it comes down to an emergency. The shoes that we are required to wear are not comfortable, to the point I couldn’t even walk at one point. Lots of managers need to be fired. I could go on, but I am running out of space. Someone needs to come talk to the workers and expose Amazon for taking advantage of us, by working us to death and not increasing wages.

An Oklahoma Amazon worker: From my experience in the driver pit, they won't let workers learn how to properly drive. They send all kinds of messages to our scanners to tell us to hurry up, and all kind of nonsense, distracting a driver from safely operating heavy machinery. Management knows about messed up things, but they just hide in a building and laugh at us and keep their mouths shut. Please send news reporters media in Amazon warehouses, things are getting pretty freaky out here.