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Amazon: Popular shopping source but dangerous workplace?

Tomorrow is officially turkey day, and friends and family are gearing up to celebrate what they are thankful for. This time of year also marks something else besides Thanksgiving and the upcoming holidays. It is shopping season, with Black Friday just around the corner, as well as the rest of the gift-giving season in full effect. 

This time of year can be good news for the economy and stores overall. Also, it can be good for the unemployed or underemployed who are able to get jobs in retail due to the higher demand for goods. Unfortunately, according to BBC News, some holiday workers for one popular company in particular run the risk of getting sick because of their job.

Most consumers have heard of Amazon, an online shopping forum. It is a popular mode of gift giving, and the company employs many employees throughout the world. There are various warehouses across the globe, one of which is in the U.K. Apparently, the working condition in that Amazon warehouse sets employees up for potential work-related illness.

Specifically, the BBC report suggests that the stress of the factory lines in the warehouse could truly be destructive to a worker's mental health. An investigation indicates that workers wear devices with timers. The devices track work time and any errors that employees might have made and send information to managers.

The stress of that sort of working environment could literally make a worker sick. Workers work full shifts and are on their feet, walking around the whole time, too. An Amazon employee reports that he walked almost 11 miles in one shift. Therefore, he and other employees in his position endure both mental and physical stress just to get the products out for Amazon to the customers.

Hard work is something to be proud of. But there is hard work, and then there is dangerous work. When employers have unreasonable, unhealthy expectations of their employees, those employees get hurt and/or sick. Whether a worker suffers a physical injury or psychological condition as a result of his job, he should talk to a workers' compensation lawyer who can help defend his best interests.

Source: BBC News, "Amazon workers face 'increased risk of mental illness,'" Nov. 23, 2013

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