Amazon extends work from home regime till October 2

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FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is seen at the company logistics center in Lauwin-Planque, northern France, April 22, 2020 after Amazon extended the closure of its French warehouses until April 25 included, following dispute with unions over health protection measures amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak. REUTERS/Pascal Rossignol

(Reuters) – Amazon.com Inc has told staff whose job can be done from home that they can do so until at least Oct. 2, pushing out the timeline on a return to work for many employees as it faces scrutiny over conditions in its warehouses.

“Employees who work in a role that can effectively be done from home are welcome to do so until at least October 2,” an Amazon spokesman said in an emailed statement on Friday, adding it was applicable to such roles globally.

The statement did not specify how much of the company’s overall workforce that covered and which roles.

It said the company is investing funds in safety measures for employees who wish to come to the office “through physical distancing, deep cleaning, temperature checks, and the availability of face coverings and hand sanitizer.”

New York Attorney General Letitia James told Amazon last week it may have violated safety measures and labor practices amid the virus outbreak as the company fired a warehouse protest leader in March.

Workers at warehouses and other facilities have stayed operational to keep deliveries flowing to customers stuck at home in government-mandated lockdowns.

Other employees have been working from home since March.

The company has raised overtime pay for warehouse workers and hired 175,000 people last month while rival brick-and-mortar retailers had to shut stores. It had 798,000 full and part-time workers globally as of Dec. 31.

Reporting by Kanishka Singh and Aakriti Bhalla in Bengaluru; editing by Patrick Graham

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