Jeff Bezos is asking laid-off restaurant and bar workers to come work for Amazon amid the coronavirus crisis

mmark@businessinsider.com (Michelle Mark)
·3 min read

Reuters/Clodagh Kilcoyne

  • Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said in a statement on Saturday the company is hiring for 100,000 new roles, and urged laid-off restaurant workers to apply.

  • Bezos added that the company has implemented a number of health and safety measures in response to the crisis, and has raised wages for hourly workers.

  • Amazon has been flooded with orders since the virus began spreading across the US, as residents have been stocking up on household essentials and other basic goods.

  • The deluge has forced the company into a tricky balancing act between protecting the health of its workers and keeping up with the rapid pace of customers' orders.

  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

jeff bezos
Founder, Chairman, CEO and President of Amazon Jeff Bezos speaks during an event about Blue Origin's space exploration plans in Washington, U.S., May 9, 2019.

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos is urging laid-off workers from closed-down restaurants and bars to come join the company as it struggles to accommodate an enormous volume of orders amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Bezos said the company is hiring for 100,000 new roles, and is raising the wages of its hourly workers who help fulfill orders and deliver to customers.

"At the same time, other businesses like restaurants and bars are being forced to shut their doors," Bezos said in a statement Saturday evening. "We hope people who've been laid off will come work with us until they're able to go back to the jobs they had."

Bezos added that the company has implemented a number of health and safety measures in response to the crisis.

"Everything from increasing the frequency and intensity of cleaning to adjusting our practices in fulfillment centers to ensure the recommended social distancing guidelines," Bezos wrote.

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He added that the company has ordered millions of face masks to help protect workers, but noted that there is a global shortage delaying the masks.

Amazon has been flooded with orders since the virus began spreading across the US, as residents have been stocking up on household essentials and other basic goods to tide themselves over as they isolate in their homes.

The deluge has forced the company into a tricky balancing act between protecting the health of its workers and keeping up with the pace of customers' orders.

Last week, the first known coronavirus case at an Amazon warehouse was confirmed at a facility in Queens, New York. Workers at the facility told The Atlantic that employees were still expected to work their regular night shift after their colleague was diagnosed, though Amazon denied that.

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