Amazon Shortens COVID-19 Isolation, Paid Leave for US Workers

Amazon told its staff, "Additional leave options are available for individuals who remain symptomatic beyond one week."

Amazon Shortens COVID-19 Isolation, Paid Leave for US Workers

Amazon said its new week-long isolation policy took effect immediately, in a message to its staff

Highlights
  • Omicron variant of the coronavirus has prompted a spike in cases
  • Amazon is the second-largest US private employer
  • Walmart is halving COVID-19 paid leave in line with the CDC guidance

Amazon on Friday told workers they only have to isolate for a week after testing positive for COVID-19, instead of 10 days, following updated US health guidance.

The Omicron variant of the coronavirus has prompted a spike in cases in the United States and worker shortages at schools, airlines and businesses. On Tuesday, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) backed recent guidance that people who contract the virus can end their isolation after five days.

In a message to staff, which Amazon shared with Reuters, the online retailer said its new week-long isolation policy took effect immediately. Workers with the virus can receive up to 40 hours paid leave, a decrease corresponding to the shorter isolation period.

"Do not come to work if you are sick," the message said. "Additional leave options are available for individuals who remain symptomatic beyond one week."

The Wall Street Journal earlier reported the news.

With hundreds of thousands of warehouse and logistics staff, Amazon is the second-largest US private employer. Walmart, the largest, this week told workers it was halving its [COVID-19] paid leave in line with the updated CDC guidance.

© Thomson Reuters 2021


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