Amazon.com Inc. is extending its increased hourly pay for all global employees and its double overtime pay for employees in Canada and the U.S. through May 30.
The pay increase, which began in April, is $2 an hour in Canada, US$2 in the U.S., £2 in the U.K. and about €2 in many European Union countries. The extensions increase the online retailer’s total investment in pay during the coronavirus to nearly $800 million for its hourly employees, according to a company blog post.
In addition, Amazon said it’s providing flexibility with leave of absence options, including expanding its policy to cover coronavirus circumstances, such as high-risk individuals or school closures.
In the company’s recent earnings release, chief executive officer Jeff Bezos said Amazon expects to spend $4 billion, and perhaps a bit more, on coronavirus-related expenses getting products to customers and keeping employees safe.
“This includes investments in personal protective equipment, enhanced cleaning of our facilities, less efficient process paths that better allow for effective social distancing, higher wages for hourly teams and hundreds of millions to develop our own COVID-19 testing capabilities. There is a lot of uncertainty in the world right now, and the best investment we can make is in the safety and well-being of our hundreds of thousands of employees.”