Amazon has “allowed Covid-19 to spread like wildfire”

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Amazon (NASDAQ: AMZN) has revealed that almost 20,000 of its employees in the US have contracted Coronavirus since March.

The US tech company has said that over 19,816 of its workforce have been infected. Amazon has received criticism from activists, unions, and public officials.

The group has been one of the clear winners of the pandemic, sales surged 40% to $88.9bn (£67.9bn) in the three months ending in June, as people switched to online shopping.

Dania Rajendra is the director of Athena, a US activist group that is campaigning for an increased regulatory oversight of Amazon. 

She said in a statement: “Amazon allowed Covid-19 to spread like wildfire in its facilities, risking the health of tens of thousands of people who work at Amazon – as well as their family members, neighbours and friends. Amazon is, in no uncertain terms, a threat to public health.”

The tech giant has said that it will be investing “hundreds of millions of dollars” in a testing scheme.

The group said in a blog post that it wanted to compare its rates of infection to other companies.

“This information would be more powerful if there were similar data from other major employers to compare it to,” it said.

The group’s founder, Jeff Bezos, is currently the world’s richest man and has $189bn worth of personal wealth. 

Shares in the company (NASDAQ: AMZN) are trading -1.90% in pre-market trading at 3,221.26 (1106GMT).