Amazon warehouse workers pee in bottles to avoid being punished for taking breaks

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos, who also owns the Washington Post, may be the world’s richest person, with a net worth of about $112 billion. But workers in his warehouses are so desperate to keep their jobs that they don’t even take time to use a restroom, but pee in bottles instead.

Jeff Bezos

The UK Times Union reports that author James Bloodworth went undercover at an Amazon warehouse in Staffordshire, UK, for a book on low wages in Britain. He found that the warehouse’s fulfillment workers, who run around Amazon’s cavernous warehouses gathering products for delivery, had a “toilet bottle” system in place because the bathrooms were too few and too far away to get to quickly. Bloodworth told The Sun:

“”For those of us who worked on the top floor, the closest toilets were down four flights of stairs. People just peed in bottles because they lived in fear of being ­disciplined over ‘idle time’ and ­losing their jobs just because they needed the loo.”

Bloodworth’s contention is consistent with a separate survey of 241 Amazon warehouse employees in England, which was released yesterday, April 16, 2018. The survey found that:

  • Almost three-quarters of UK fulfillment-center staff members were afraid of using the toilet because of time concerns.
  • The survey anonymously quoted one person as saying targets had “increased dramatically” and “I do not drink water because I do not have time to go to the toilet.” Another said: “The target grows every year. I do not have two more legs yet to make the 100% to pick, where you actually need to run and go to the toilet just during the break. Packing 120 products per hour is terribly heavy. You have to pack two products per minute. You do not have time to drink water because you go to the toilet after every evening sends messages to the scanner with the target and tells you to hurry.”
  • Respondents said they felt considerably more anxious after joining Amazon.
  • Some workers who reported feeling sick — even through pregnancy — said they were penalized for missing work or taking breaks. One employee said she was ill while pregnant and was given a warning. Another said: “I turned up for my shift even though I felt like s—, managed 2 hours then I just could not do anymore. Told my supervisor and was signed off sick, I had a gastric bug (sickness and diarrhea, very bad) saw my doc. Got a sick note with an explanation, but still got a strike.”

Amazon is known to track how fast its warehouse workers can pick and package items from its shelves, imposing strictly timed breaks and targets. It issues warning points for those who don’t meet its goals or who take extended breaks.

But the company denies the survey findings and Bloodworth’s allegations. Amazon says it does not time toilet breaks and that its performance targets are based on previous worker performance. In a statement to Business Insider, the company says:

“Amazon provides a safe and positive workplace for thousands of people across the UK with competitive pay and benefits from day one. We have not been provided with confirmation that the people who completed the survey worked at Amazon and we don’t recognize these allegations as an accurate portrayal of activities in our buildings. We have a focus on ensuring we provide a great environment for all our employees and last month Amazon was named by LinkedIn as the 7th most sought after place to work in the UK and ranked first place in the US. Amazon also offers public tours of its fulfilment centres so customers can see first-hand what happens after they click ‘buy’ on Amazon.”

The company insists it uses “proper discretion” when it comes to sick leave and absences from work, and that it provides coaching to help people improve, on-site occupational health and physiotherapy support, as well as legal, financial and workplace guidance.

See also:

~Eowyn

46 responses to “Amazon warehouse workers pee in bottles to avoid being punished for taking breaks

  1. I believe the workers, not the company talking heads.

    Liked by 6 people

  2. Marxist workers’ paradise. Anybody jumping out of windows yet? It will really be a paradise for the very few who will hold the power, people like Chairman Emeritus in Death Mao.

    Liked by 6 people

  3. Reblogged this on necltr and commented:

    The result of GHWB’s fast-tracked NAFTA treaty carried over the goal line by WJC. GHWB to UN General Assembly February 1, 1992, “It is the sacred principles enshrined in the United Nations charter to which the American people will henceforth pledge their allegiance.”

    Liked by 4 people

  4. Isn’t it ironic that the new “robber baron” is a group of people who publicly espouse very “progressive” values? They are the epitome of the hypocrite.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Bezos’ mouthpiece, the Washington Post, was calling for unlimited immigration to satisfy the need for more workers in the USA.
    According to shadowstats, real unemployment in the US is
    around 25% about equal to that of the 1930s depression.
    Why is the official rate so much lower? Long-term
    unemployed are not counted! This practice started with
    “I feel your pain” Bill Clinton.
    As Bezos knows well, automation is rapidly making
    many workers redundant. Up to half of all workers
    will be unneeded by 2030 by some academic estimates.
    AUTOMATION MAKES IMMIGRATION OBSOLETE.

    Even more ominous is the development of ROBOT ARMIES
    which will kill with no reservation. The 1% elite throughout
    history have tolerated the 99% because they needed the
    labor to support the elite lifestyle. With automation that
    connection is diminishing rapidly. The 99% are viewed
    as peons befouling the environment who should be
    eliminated ASAP.
    I worked for company that was supported by
    tax-deductible charitable donations almost exclusively.
    The owners fired most of the employees, retaining
    a few as personal servants. The owners lived
    in opulence for 20 years on donations until
    the IRS finally shut the company down. Society
    at large with coming automation will see workers
    discarded by execution, not just fired like the above
    charity workers.

    Liked by 4 people

    • you got it right – all one has to do is read the Georgia Guidestones ‘ list of the elites “commandments” / agenda. Almost half of the 10 listed are about population reduction, reproduction control, or related topics. Ever since Thomas Malthus propagated his theory of population, each age seems to find those who “refine” it further – people like Margaret Sanger – eugenicist and founder of Planned Parenthood (and for the purpose of limiting black people), Adolf Hitler et al, and of course the elite / puppetmasters orchestrating behind the scenes.

      Liked by 2 people

    • How many yacht washers and golf caddies can they use?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Where are the Labor Unions while all this is going on? THIS is why they were started. Granted,as employers began to treat employees better,the Union’s purpose drifted to paying their own people better and buying the perks the Union Bosses came to expect from their Status. It appears it’s time for the Union to GET BACK TO WORK.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Truck . . . . Very good observation. To go along with that I should imagine that Great Britain must have something like OSHA (Occupation Safety Health ___, here in the USA.) When enough workers file for unemployment, due to health related injury, including depression, anxiety, bladder infections due to retaining urine, etc . . . then the government should step in and have reps from OSHA or Britain’s equivalent actually go in and have them walk through various employee’s shifts to ascertain what is actually go. Whether the quotas be reasonable, or are they instituted in order to break the backs of the worker.

      Every time I see that picture of Bezos, with that smarmy smirk on his face–I would like to slap him into next week. Unfortunately, we have returned to a time when surfs were expendable.

      Since Bezos treats his employees in this manner, and I do believe the workers over the BS comments of Bezos’ henchmen . . . it is little wonder that he is worth this much money.

      Liked by 3 people

  7. The pendulum of human values swings from evil to evil with very little time spent in the middle, good. Additionally, the corruption of the side in power increases as its power increases. Management will extract as much sweat from labor as it can get at the lowest cost, and labor will sooner or later do as little as possible with the greatest reward. Will robots be given the AI to seek the products they produce?

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Pingback: Amazon warehouse workers pee in bottles to avoid being punished for taking breaks | The Olive Branch Report

  9. Here’s your future, almost fully realized. Clinton used to call this “leveling”. Whenever China or NAFTA was discussed he would say, “some of us must reduce so that others can have more (or words to that effect)”. I understood him. It’s amazing how people don’t listen.

    Just “who” was it asking for this? It wasn’t me. Was it you?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Clinton was a “have more.”

      Liked by 1 person

      • marblenecltr . . . . Now that this “have more” has had so much more than any common person has a right to have . . . let him pay for his crimes. Just look at all the deaths attributable to the Clinton Machine.

        Liked by 1 person

    • lophatt . . . . How could anyone think that any good notion would come from a man who is as sexually crazed, and criminally minded as that POS? I certainly hope that in this latest “letter from Senators asking that criminal investigations begin on Killary, Loretta Lynch, Comey, Rosenstein, and all the other’s ALSO INCLUDES, OR WILL LEAD UP TO AN INVESTIGATION OF THE CLINTON FOUNDATION, BILL CLINTON, AND CHELSEA CLINTON.” It is high time that criminals of high social standing are treated to the same degree of being held to the laws of this land, as the peasants are! I certainly hope that if Killary is indicted, found guilty, that due to ill health, she will not get a by-pass on actually wearing an orange jump suit, and being behind the razor wired walls of a Federal prison. There are certainly other people in prisons all over Hell’s Half Acre that are in ill health, and they still are called on to complete their prison terms.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Kevin J Lankford

    I hope they at least give every one their own bottle.

    I Think these workers or employees every where, should keep in mind just why they are referred to as a ‘work force’. They are the true force behind every industry. There is no value with out the labor that creates it, even if it comes down to the labor that creates the technology that replaces much of human labor. Regardless, resource are bound to be more finite than labor, at least in the pre-millennium.

    Me, I would have been raising cane when the “personnel office” became “office of human resources”. That was as dehumanizing as I could stand. I was just lucky, I guess, for spending most of my working life in the construction trade, where to much intellect was frowned on, if not resented and envied (perhaps why they love illegal aliens so much).

    Liked by 2 people

    • Resources that are deemed dispensable. Not recyclable. Deplorably dispensable.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Kevin . . . . Congratulations! I agree with your entire synopsis, particularly the fact that big business does not like “people who have to much intellect.” This is the very reason why our schools are so busy dumbing down each successive generation so that we will have patient, obedient, ignorant masses of workers. We are in the same boat as when plantation owner’s insisted that “slaves not be taught to read.” A class of ignorant, people who are not able to think critically due to being denied true education, are easier to control, and happier with their lot in life.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. Happening at the “motherland” is no surprise -that is socialism. Neither workers nor robots on the production floor, guess they are all hiding taking a pee.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. They should pee and deficate in the packages they’re shipping, you know like the agricultural workers do onto the produce.
    Not sure how they can contaminate eggs, though

    Like

  13. Reblogged this on The Most Revolutionary Act and commented:

    “”For those of us who worked on the top floor, the closest toilets were down four flights of stairs. People just peed in bottles because they lived in fear of being ­disciplined over ‘idle time’ and ­losing their jobs just because they needed the loo.”

    Like

  14. Pingback: Amazon warehouse workers pee in bottles to avoid being punished for taking breaks — Fellowship of the Minds | Gitardood's Weblog

  15. no, wait.. this cannot possibly be true.. The UK is a socialist country.. a workers’ paradise. It would be interesting to so something similar in a US facility.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Pingback: News and Headlines. 4/17/2018 – News and Headlines: RoboeAmerican, informing the people.

  17. Seems like their policies are sexist as women find peeing in bottles a little more difficult. Perhaps Amazon will provide them with free diapers.
    I have found it curious that I have purchased at least two items on eBay but received them from Amazon., causing me to wonder if Amazon is using different names, at least on eBay.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. The best thing we, the people, can do is QUIT SHOPPING AT AMAZON. So, an item may (or may not) cost a few more cents? When tempted to order from Amazon, just remember you’re only making Bezos richer .. and smarmier and smirkier.

    Liked by 3 people

    • What Bezos and Amazon need is an anti-monopoly anti-trust lawsuit.

      Liked by 3 people

      • Precisely. After all, that’s why we have the SEC (I think).

        Liked by 1 person

      • Absolutely, and, while at dusting off the Sherman Anti-Trust Act (from the late 1800s) and the Clayton Act (about 100 years old), let us reverse the planned and administered CFR destruction of the First Amendment through the monopolistic control of the media/information. John D. Rockefeller, Sr., “Competition is sin.”

        Liked by 1 person

      • Dr Eowyn . . . If the powers that be were paying attention, we would see that Amazon should have already been tied up in “an anti-monopoly anti-trust lawsuit.” As far as I can see, Bezos subscribes to a scorched Earth policy when doing business.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Anonymous poster #1

        Lets not forget bezos also stands guilty of facilitating the rape of children by proxy, thanks to his company hosting, and profiting from the sales of, a pedophilic “how-to molest” manual, which he & his company did initially defend as well, although there are much more pedophilic things still listed on amazon for sale, that bezos is still profiting from. Apparently john young of cryptome.org got some info on the scuzzbag, try searching it with your favored search engine (with “site:cryptome.org” as part of the search words) for “spy dox” and “bezos” and see what comes up.

        Liked by 1 person

  19. Get Unionized then they wouldn’t have to piss in a bottle……

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Not only should Bezos be prosecuted under anti-trust statutes, he should be stripped of his wealth, also.
    As a matter of fact, he should be forced to give back the $650 million the CIA gave him to buy the Washington Post.
    Bezos is the kind of creep—like Bill Gates—who would replace all his workers with AI the very first chance he gets, so he can save even more money.
    Henry Ford was a tough nut, but he actually contributed MORE to society, in terms of goods and wages, than any of the billionaires around today. Ford created in jobs—in more markets than one—and all these billionaires today (save possibly Donald Trump) just want to vacuum every last cent of wealth for themselves!

    The denial of wages to the worker who has earned them is a sin that cries out to Heaven for vengeance!

    Liked by 4 people

    • Steven . . . . Great points! In particular I am taken with your last sentence . . . “The denial of wages to the worker who has earned them is a sin that cries out to Heaven for vengeance!” I am unable to quote the exact scripture, but the Lord cautioned the Israelites that “they were not to bind the mouths of the oxen who tread the grain.” In other words those who work, whether it be an animal, or a human needs to be taken care of respective to their wages. What Bezos is doing is just criminal. I agree, he needs his funds frozen, and those that he has acquired in any means other than strictly legitimately, should be forfeited.

      Liked by 3 people

      • That’s right, Auntie Lulu, and it IS a national security problem: Bezos actually has the power and the ability to WIPE OUT supermarket chains AT WILL. This is very appealing to the Power Elites who want to starve us all to death, and it is a real EXISTENTIAL THREAT to the American Public. Bezos’ acquisition of Whole Foods poses a real danger as the first domino to fall.
        I AM BOYCOTTING AMAZON AND WHOLE FOODS FORTHWITH, UNLESS IT IS UNAVOIDABLE FOR ME TO DO SO.

        Like

      • Another scripture written twice, I don’t recall the location, “The laborer is worthy of his hire.”

        Like

  21. This is the “brave new world” of internet sales. And it’s driven by the same kind of greedy rascal that led to the child labor laws. This guy has to be brought under control before too many others with power follow his ways of oppression.

    Liked by 2 people

    • TD . . . . Bravo! I agree completely with that sentiment. We were better off when we purchased goods and services from Mom & Pop operations.

      Like

    • Nothing wrong with internet sales, per se: It saves me a lot of time. (After all, Alex Jones doesn’t have a brick-and-mortar store). It’s the abuse of MONOPOLY that I take to be the real threat. (And if we eliminate internet sales, we could wind up ending a lot of internet jobs, something I am looking for at 62 years of age).

      Liked by 1 person

  22. DCG . . . . I find that I am dumbfounded by the fact that some white color employee’s dogs are being treated to the high life in Seattle, while other lower class employees in Great Britain are literally being treated like animals.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. Sounds like “Great Clips” pushing 13 minute total haircut times per customer’s haircut session.

    20 years ago It started off as around 20-24 minutes (approx. 3 haircuts per hour), then they hired the ex CEO of Burger King. I have a friend who still works there, and the tales she tells scares me.

    Next thing happens is the stylists are getting shorter amount of time to make expected, harried, frenetic “Productivity” work… Never mind client consultations, the cow-licks or tangles in the hair of kids or even long hair styles.

    *Punishment (They cut stylists’ hourly pay) for not adhering to productivity times. No humanity left. Sounds like this is the new, fun, trend in Business today!

    MAYBE:
    Great Clips should just get the “Flow-be” style vacuum hose/buzz cut machine and hook it up to the self-serve stations!

    BTW:(The haircut times also include no receptionist so they have to answer the phone during the haircut,selling expected product levels, greeting& checking clients in at the front door, blowdrying & ringing out their clients on the till).

    Leaves very precious little time for any respectable haircuts. No wonder they are having troubles keeping workers/stylists. More stylists who can save a bit of money are fleeing to renting their own stations/businesses.

    Liked by 1 person

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