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Amazon workers plan to walk out over return-to-office policy, climate impact

Amazon workers calling for prioritizing climate and more flexible working conditions are planning a walkout at the company's Seattle headquarters and around the world Wednesday.

Amazon employees are planning a walkout on Wednesday at the company's Seattle headquarters over frustrations about recent layoffs, a return-to-work order and the company's environmental impact.

The walkout is slated for noon to 1 p.m. PT.

"As AECJ, we’re walking out to tell leadership that climate action cannot be sidelined. When will Amazon have all electric vehicles? When will it stop building pipelines for data centers? When will there be a real plan to reduce emissions instead of increase them every year?" Amazon Employees for Climate Justice (AECJ), a climate change advocacy group founded by Amazon workers, tweeted.

In an annual statement to investors, Amazon said it aims to deploy 100,000 electric delivery vehicles by 2030 and reach net-zero carbon by 2040. However, walkout organizers contend the company must do more and commit to zero emissions by 2030.


In a post on Medium, it said that when Amazon listens to employees, it "moves in the right direction." The walkout is intended to "get that back on track." 

On the page to sign up for the walkout, in partnership with Amazon's Remote Advocacy community leaders, the group said that about 1,920 employees had pledged to walk out around the world, with more than 900 in Seattle. Some would also be able to participate virtually.

The page included demands, including that Amazon puts climate at the forefront of decision-making and that it embraces the "new reality of remote and flexible work" in order to remain an "innovative company that attracts and retains world-class talent."

"This is about Amazon going in the wrong direction, and losing trust," the groups wrote, noting that taking action as part of the walkout is "legally protected activity." 


"We respect our employees’ rights to express their opinions," Amazon said in a statement last week, according to The Associated Press.

Amazon did not immediately respond to FOX Business' request for comment.

The protest comes a month after a policy took effect requiring workers to return to the office three days a week. 

CEO Andy Jassy said in February that the company made the decision after observing what has worked during the COVID-19 pandemic, noting staff concluded employees tended to be more engaged in person.

In a note asking Amazon employees to pledge their participation in the walkout, organizers said Amazon "must return autonomy to its teams, who know their employees and customers best, to make the best decision on remote, in-person, or hybrid work, and to its employees to choose a team which enables them to work the way they work best."


The walkout comes on the heels of massive layoffs, with Amazon cutting 27,000 jobs since November.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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