Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez made some startling claims against Amazon’s poor working conditions. The company has responded by inviting the freshman congresswoman to tour their facility and see it “for yourself.”
David Clark, the senior vice president of worldwide operations, gave the invitation on Twitter to Ocasio-Cortez. She had accused the e-commerce mega-company of creating “dehumanizing conditions” for its employees.
“Is that culture of ‘strict performance’ why Amazon workers have to urinate in bottles & work while on food stamps to meet ‘targets’? ‘Performance’ shouldn’t come at the cost of dehumanizing conditions. That’s why we got rid of sweatshops,” she wrote.
Clark immediately retaliated and maintained that her allegations “aren’t true” and he invited the congresswoman to visit the company to get a sense how the employees are treated.
“.@aoc these claims simply aren’t true. We are proud of our jobs with excellent pay ($15 min), benefits from day 1, & lots of other benefits like our Career Choice pre-paid educational programs. Why don’t you come take a tour & see for yourself…we’d love to have you!,” he tweeted. The post was retweeted through Amazon’s official PR handle.
The heated exchanged between the two came after Amazon’s spokesman criticized the New York Democrat and other lawmakers in the state for creating a hostile environment to make business. Amazon decided to pull out of the project to build its planned headquarters in the borough of Queens in New York City. Ocasio-Cortez’s district includes a portion of Queens and the Bronx.
“If you talk to Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, it’s ‘Never Amazon,’” Jodi Seth, the head of policy communications for Amazon, told NBC News in an interview Thursday. “If you talk to [New York City Councilman Jimmy] Van Bramer, it’s unions.”
Ocasio-Cortez was happy about Amazon’s decision, even as others noted that this actually means a loss of well-paying jobs in the state.
“Anything is possible: today was the day a group of dedicated, everyday New Yorkers & their neighbors defeated Amazon’s corporate greed, its worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world,” she tweeted.
Jodi Seth noted that while it wasn’t “any one incident” that caused the company to back out of the state, the contentious political climate that occurred over the past three months was what led to the decision.
“It was that the environment over the course of the past three months had not got any better. There were some local and state elected officials who refused to meet with Amazon and criticized us day in and day out about the plan,” she said in the interview.