Coronavirus safety drives strikes at Amazon, Instacart and Whole Foods

Coronavirus safety drives strikes at Amazon, Instacart and Whole Foods


Several groups of workers considered essential during the coronavirus crisis say they are planning work stoppages as ways to get improved safety measures and paid leave.

For Tuesday, employees at Whole Foods have planned a “sick out” over demands for better conditions including double pay because of the hazards of working during the pandemic.

Already, as many as 150,000 workers for grocery delivery service Instacart planned a nationwide strike for Monday. Also on Monday, workers at an Amazon warehouse in Staten Island, New York, plan to walk out during lunch.

Concerns for Instacart and Whole Foods workers included hazard pay and sick pay for those who stay at home because they are at high risk or could pose high risk to others.

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Whole Foods is opening early for customers over 60.

“COVID-19 is a very real threat to the safety of our workforce and our customers. We cannot wait for politicians, institutions, or our own management to step in to protect us,” reads a petition being spread on social media about the Whole Foods #GlobalSickOut #March31st.

Workers in grocery stores and warehouses have seen their workplaces transformed – and delivery services inundated by demand – as tens of millions of Americans stay at home during the pandemic. Workers say physical distancing isn’t always followed and cleaning supplies are not always readily available.


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