Amazon workers claim the company is forcing them to work grueling 10-hour shifts

“It is inaccurate that we are only asking associates at DCH1 to change to a single shift type. We offer a wide range of job opportunities at Amazon sites and we are working with each associate directly on the option that best supports them,” Jen Crowcroft, a spokesperson for Amazon, told Engadget. “Our associates are the heart and soul of our operations, and we are happy to continue to offer great, flexible career opportunities in world-class facilities.”

Motherboard suggests Amazon is moving to the megacycle model to save on labor costs since longer shifts allow the company to hire fewer workers, which in turn saves it money on benefits. Amazon contends the model streamlines its operations and provides a longer window for customers to order products. The company is also quick to note the three new facilities where it’s transferring DCH1 workers pay at least $15 per hour and offer comprehensive benefits.  

Still, megacycle shifts come with several notable drawbacks for workers. There’s less flexibility than a five or eight-hour shift, and a recent report found injury rates are higher at Amazon warehouses during the holiday season when employees work longer hours in one go. 

DCH1 Amazonians United is attempting to challenge the decision. This week, the group started a petition for megacycle shift workers. They’re demanding the company pay those employees an extra $2 per hour, as well as provide accommodations to those workers who can’t work an entire shift because of other obligations. “Amazon’s change in delivery station shift schedules is throwing our lives into chaos,” the group says in the petition. “They give us two weeks to decide between caring for our family and having a job. This is an unacceptable level of corporate control over our lives.”

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