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Amazon Drivers Will Deliver Your Furniture, Assemble It at Your Request

Less than a month after another controversy on the harsh working conditions and poor pay for Amazon drivers, the e-commerce giant is trialing a simplified version of the Amazon Home Services program. It involves giving even more work to the drivers.
Amazon will be using some 10,000 electric delivery vans from Rivian by 2022 1 photo
Bloomberg has obtained an internal memo that mentions a new premium service, currently trialed in Virginia and two other markets. The service consists in offering a complete solution to customers, by getting drivers not just to deliver the items purchased online, but also to assemble them and, if need be, repackage them and drive them back to Amazon.

As of the moment of press, certain U.S. markets are offered the Amazon Home Services program, which links customers with third-party contractors and companies for items bought on Amazon. In other words, once you buy a piece of furniture or bigger appliance, and take delivery of it, you must schedule a different appointment to have it assembled or installed.

That part could soon be performed by the Amazon driver, the report notes. The same driver will be tasked with repacking whatever item is deemed not satisfactory for the client, and returning it to Amazon, which should cut down delivery / return times, as well as expenses for the company.

On the other hand, this means that the drivers will have to be trained in putting together furniture and assembly of big appliances, like washing machines and dishwashers. This also means longer working hours, more difficult work, and running a greater risk of injury.

At the end of March, a damning report brought up again the issue of unpaid overtime, difficult work conditions, and the stressful and dangerous work environment of the drivers. To add insult to injury, drivers will often be forced to urinate in bottles because they have no bathroom access. Amazon denied this; however, for the record, it slightly walked back on the denial, saying inconveniences of this type do occasionally happen.


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