Constituents have been getting in touch recently about Amazon and their employee's working conditions -just because a business operates online, does not mean its responsibilities to society are any less. Amazon has close to a one-third market share of e-commerce in this country and I read the points constituents have raised with interest.
The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is the independent regulator for work-related health, safety and wellbeing. HSE has published guidance on warehouse safety which employers must follow. This includes detailed information on how to carry and load and how to mitigate risks, including how to prevent injuries. The full guidance can be found online at: https://www.hse.gov.uk/logistics/warehousing.htm
With the additional safety risks posed by Covid-19, I am pleased the HSE is conducting spot checks and inspections on businesses to ensure they are adhering to Covid-secure guidance and keeping employees safe.
If an employee feels their workplace is not safe, due to health and safety issues or Covid-19 measures, they can report it to their local authority or the HSE to investigate. No employee should feel unsafe at work and, if they do, they may want to initially raise it with their employer to see if any action can be taken to reduce risk and ensure safety.
On taxation, it is right companies pay the tax they owe the Exchequer so the Government can fund the public services we all rely on and invest into infrastructure, renewables and other schemes to benefit the UK and create jobs. That is why the Digital Services Tax for online companies was introduced to ensure that search engines, social media platforms, and online marketplaces pay UK tax that reflects the value they derive from UK users.
Finally, constituents have mentioned Amazon’s environmental policy and, for such a profitable multi-national company, it seems only right they lead the way in championing sustainability and environmental business policies. I am pleased Amazon has introduced the Climate Pledge and the organisation is working to achieve net zero by 2040. I hope they will continue to work towards green targets and support smaller businesses they work with, such as suppliers or sellers, also achieve green targets.