Amazon defends itself from Bernie Sanders’ attacks

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Life inside an Amazon fulfillment center

Senator Bernie Sanders desires to slap a particular tax on Amazon and different massive firms that make use of staff who acquire meals stamps and different public help. However Amazon disputes Sanders’ depiction, saying its pay and advantages are aggressive with different retailers.

The progressive icon from Vermont has been on the assault recently, posting a sequence of Fb movies over the previous week calling out Amazon (AMZN) and Walmart (WMT) for not paying a residing wage, which he lists in some posts as $15 an hour. In a single video, titled “Get Amazon Off of Company Welfare,” he highlighted that CEO Jeff Bezos is the world’s richest particular person and earns $260 million a day, whereas lots of his staff are on meals stamps.

“Mr. Bezos continues to pay many 1000’s of his Amazon staff wages which might be so low that they’re pressured to rely on taxpayer-funded packages, resembling meals stamps, Medicaid and backed housing so as to survive,” Sanders mentioned within the video, stressing that taxpayers foot the invoice for these advantages. “Frankly, I do not imagine that atypical People ought to be subsidizing the wealthiest individuals on this planet as a result of they pay their staff insufficient wages.”

The senator argues that Amazon’s median worker pay is $28,446, which he says is 9% lower than the trade common and “properly under what constitutes a residing wage in the USA.” Additionally, he says he believes that lots of the firm’s staff are both contractors or employed by non permanent staffing companies and earn even much less.

Sanders plans to introduce laws subsequent week that may levy a tax on giant firms equal to the worth of the federal government advantages their staff obtain. He argues that if employers paid a residing wage, taxpayers would save $150 billion a yr on public help packages.

Associated: Bezos value $150 billion as Amazon hits all-time excessive

As well as, he posted a type on his Senate and Fb pages urging Amazon staff to share their experiences working on the on-line retail titan and asking them whether or not they’re on public help or battle with demanding working situations.

Amazon, nevertheless, known as Sanders’ assertions “inaccurate and deceptive” in a weblog put up Wednesday. It has invited the senator to tour one in all its success facilities, which is the place lots of Amazon’s lower-paid staff work. The corporate says that Sanders is referring to individuals who solely labored at Amazon for a brief time period or who selected to work part-time.

It highlighted that its common hourly wage for a full-time success heart worker is greater than $15 an hour, together with money, inventory and incentive bonuses, however earlier than time beyond regulation. Amazon additionally famous that it gives well being and incapacity insurance coverage, in addition to retirement financial savings plans, firm inventory, tuition funds and as much as 20 weeks of paid go away. The corporate says it created greater than 130,000 new jobs within the U.S. final yr.

Associated: Bernie Sanders is internet hosting a city corridor for staff. Their CEOs are invited.

“We encourage anybody to match our pay and advantages to different retailers,” it wrote, encouraging staff to fill out Sanders’ type.

Walmart didn’t instantly reply to a request for remark.

CNNMoney (New York) First revealed August 29, 2018: 1:12 PM ET



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