Some Workers Not Happy After Amazon's Big Move on Wages

Because Amazon is also ending stock option, bonus programs
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 9, 2018 7:03 PM CDT
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In this Aug. 3, 2017, file photo, workers prepare to move products at an Amazon fulfillment center in Baltimore.   (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky, File)

(Newser) – Amazon is being widely praised for its decision to raise its minimum wage for all its workers to $15 per hour, but as the New York Times reports, many Amazon warehouse workers across the country are actually "fuming." In addition to raising wages, Amazon will stop giving out new stock grants and monthly bonuses, and some longtime workers believe that will mean thousands of dollars less per year once their total compensation is calculated. Bernie Sanders asked Amazon on Thursday to confirm "how the total compensation of employees who would have received stock options—those with the company for two or more years—will be affected as a result of the recent changes," but a spokesperson for the senator says he has not yet received a response.

It was like Amazon told workers, "Thanks, we appreciate you going into the holidays. Here’s less money," one worker told the Times, noting that after monthly attendance and productivity bonuses are removed and she stops receiving shares, she will make less despite her base pay being raised by $1 per hour. Amazon workers who were not eligible for the bonuses or the stock options will, of course, receive more money. And Amazon insists in a statement that the wage increase "more than compensates for the phaseout" of the other programs and that a traditional pay raise is "more immediate and predictable." See the Times for much more on the conflict.

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