Enlarge /. An Amazon logistics center in Brétigny-sur-Orge, France, on April 13, 2020.
Amazon has initially closed all six distribution centers in France after a French court ruled that it had failed to take sufficient measures to protect its warehouse workers from COVID-19.
The court ruled Tuesday that Amazon must stop selling "non-essential" items in France by Wednesday or face a fine of 1 million euros per day until a stricter health protection plan is in place.
While the ruling allowed the company to continue shipping items such as groceries, medicines, and "hygiene products," company executives said the mandate was too broad to interpret. "Is a baby bottle a hygiene product? Yes, I think so," Amazon manager Frédéric Duval told the Wall Street Journal. "But is that what the judge thinks is a hygiene product? I don't know."
The lawsuit was filed by a group of French unions who claimed that the conditions in the Amazon camps were not sufficiently safe to deal with COVID-19. Amazon immediately appealed the verdict and said at the time: "We disagree with today's decision by the Nanterre court and are currently reviewing the impact on our French logistics sites. We will continue to work with everyone involved and make the necessary clarifications like we've been doing since the beginning of this unprecedented crisis. "
In an internal memo to the French unions Reuters had received, the company said its facilities would be closed by at least April 20 to "assess the risks associated with the COVID-19 epidemic and take the necessary action to ensure the security of theirs. " Employees. "
The demand for essential and frivolous goods for Amazon has increased worldwide in recent weeks, as buyers not only try not to go public, but have also closed many of these brick-and-mortar stores – some temporarily, others permanently – in response to that Novel Corona Virus Threat.
The systems and employees of Amazon were overwhelmed by the hustle and bustle. The company quickly hired 175,000 new warehouse and delivery workers, despite warning of delays, prioritizing deliveries of non-essential goods, and restricting grocery delivery to existing customers.
A new Wall Street Journal report notes that, to get consumers to lighten the load, Amazon is now reversing the course of decades of design, trying to get consumers to buy less than they do otherwise could.
A staff member told the WSJ: "We normally want to sell as much as possible, but our entire network is currently so full of hand sanitizers and toilet paper that we are unable to meet other requirements."
In addition to scrapping upcoming Mother's Day and Father's Day promotions, which are usually carried out, the WSJ also removed Amazon's referral widgets, coupon promotions, and other subtle changes to keep visitors from being unable to get their baskets of physical goods, according to the WSJ fill that you have yourself otherwise could buy impuls. (When I previously visited the Amazon website, all of the proposed modules on the page where I normally see items that I have bought in the past either relate directly to the company's COVID-19 response or only promote digital goods and services, including Amazon Prime Video and Kindle eBooks.)
Sources within the company informed the WSJ that they do not expect many of the changes to be permanent, but that Amazon will need more than two months before it can return to its pre-pandemic methods.