14:55 GMT19 April 2021
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    The development comes as the company's employees in Bessemer, Alabama are attempting to form a union to be able to push for better working conditions at Amazon. Over the years, the company has been accused of mistreatment of workers, who were reportedly subjected to tough conditions in order to meet quotas.

    US Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has slammed Amazon for putting performance pressure on employees as the e-commerce giant has recently faced enormous criticism following a report that revealed delivery drivers had to urinate in bottles and defecate in bags while on the job as they feared missing quotas and deadlines.

    The official posted a statement on Twitter, saying her loved one used to work for Amazon, but had to quit due to tough working conditions.

    ​The congresswoman also revealed that the company's employees in the Queens district Ocasio-Cortez represents were left "terrified" and sobbed when they met her last year to discuss Amazon's alleged failure to protect its workers during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Criticism From Other Officials

    The representative for New York's 14th congressional district is not the only official to draw attention to the plight of Amazon workers in recent days. Such high-profile Democrats as Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders condemned the e-commerce giant's treatment of workers. Sanders, who ran for president in 2016 and 2020, said on Twitter that Amazon's employees in Alabama are treated "like robots".

    ​US Representative for Michigan's 13th congressional district Rashida Tlaib claimed Amazon called the police on her and Rep. Debbie Dingell after the two women decided to visit a company warehouse in order to inspect working conditions.

    ​Urinating Scandal and Amazon's Response

    The development comes days after the Intercept revealed that Amazon knew its workers had to urinate in bottles and defecate in bags during work as they feared they would miss deliveries. This caused a strong backlash because the company had earlier denied the allegations.

    ​The news is yet another item in a long list of accusations levelled at the company. Last year, Amazon was harshly criticised for failing to provide personal protective equipment to its employees at the height of the pandemic. Amazon once again responded by denying the claims that workers were forced to skip bathroom breaks in order not to miss quotas.

    ​The company's media relations account on Twitter also attacked officials who criticised the company's labour regulations and working conditions.

    ​In addition, it was reported that the company was using bots on social media, who praised Amazon's working conditions and voiced scepticism about employees' attempts in Alabama to create a union in order to push for better wages and working conditions.

    ​The accounts of fake workers resembled the accounts of Amazon Ambassadors – the company's real employees, who promote Amazon on social media. Twitter later acknowledged it had suspended at least four accounts that spread misinformation. Amazon said it had nothing to do with fake accounts.


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