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Amazon settles California claims it concealed COVID-19 cases from workers -Breaking

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO – Packaged goods that are available for shipment can be seen in Tracy, California at the Amazon Fulfillment Center on August 3, 2015. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Jonathan Stempel

(Reuters] – Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ) has settled with California in a dispute over claims it withheld from local health officials and warehouse workers the information about workers who had been infected.

California charged Amazon with violating Assembly Bill 685 in September 2020, which required it to keep its workers informed about COVID-19’s spread and give information on safety plans, coronavirus-related services, and other related matters.

Rob Bonta, attorney general, said that online retailer Amazon had kept tens to thousands of employees and agencies under lock-and-key, rendering them ineffectively able to track the spread virus.

Amazon reached a settlement with California warehouse workers and agreed to inform them within one-day about any new COVID-19 case.

Seattle-based companies will pay $500,000 for state consumer protection laws enforcement.

Amazon has not admitted any wrongdoing, or that it was liable in the settlement. It was filed at the California Superior Court in Sacramento.

Amazon spokesperson Barbara Agrait stated in an email that “we’re happy to have this resolved” and noted that there were no substantial issues with safety measures within our buildings.

The nonprofit National Employment Law Project reported that at least fourteen U.S. states had adopted COVID-19 comprehensive worker safety protections in June.

Amazon is being criticized for its handling COVID-19 at work.

A New York judge refused to dismiss the lawsuit filed last month by Letitia James, Attorney General of New York. The suit was about worker safety in two New York City fulfillment centres.

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