Thousands of delivery drivers who operate under Amazon-contracted companies, but not Amazon itself, are likely to lose their jobs in the coming weeks as a result of the e-tail giant’s decision to severe relationships with certain contractors.
Several contractors have told state workforce regulators that they collectively will need to layoff at least 3,242 employees by April 30 because of Amazon’s decision to discontinue certain partnerships.
As of December 2019, Amazon had a list of around 800 delivery service partners to tap for package deliveries to customers’ homes and businesses. These contracted companies usually work solely for Amazon and handle driver logistics, such as wages, vehicle repairs and insurance. In 2019 alone, Amazon delivered 3.5 billion packages globally.
Another round of contractor terminations in October hit delivery services Letter Ride and Inpax particularly hard: 900 Letter Ride employees in California and Texas were let go, while 650 Inpax employees in North Carolina, Ohio, Georgia and Texas were also put out of work.
In a statement to FN, an Amazon spokesperson suggested that some of the company’s terminated contracts were the result of facilities that did not meet its standards. “Sometimes the companies we contract with to deliver packages do not meet our bar for safety, performance or working conditions,” said the statement. “When that happens we have a responsibility to terminate those relationships and work to find new partners.”
In the same statement, the spokesperson noted that Amazon “[works] hard to ensure there is zero or very little net job loss in these communities” and that “in the past six months, more than 300 new Delivery Service Partners have launched their businesses with Amazon, creating job opportunities for nearly 15,000 drivers.”
In May 2019, Amazon announced that it would be giving $10,000 in start-up costs to employees that launched new delivery businesses through the company..
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