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COVID Protocols: Attorney General Moves To Force Amazon To Comply With Coronavirus Safety Investigation

SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) -- California Attorney General Xavier Becerra on Monday filed a petition requesting that the Sacramento County Superior Court order Amazon to comply with outstanding investigative subpoenas in regard with the company's COVID protocols and coronavirus cases at its facilities.

According to a news release issued by Becerra's office, the state's petition alleges that Amazon has failed to adequately comply with lawful requests for information as part of an ongoing investigation into coronavirus protocols and the status of COVID-19 cases at Amazon facilities across California.

"Amazon has made billions during this pandemic relying on the labor of essential workers. Their workers get the job done while putting themselves at risk," Becerra said in the release. "It's critical to know if these workers are receiving the protections on the job that they are entitled to under the law."

Becerra went on to say Amazon has delayed responding to his office's investigative requests long enough, noting "Time is of the essence."

According to Becerra's office, the California Department of Justice issued investigative subpoenas in August following months of informal communication with Amazon seeking information about workplace health and safety measures. The news release says the subpoenas sought specific details about the nature and extent of Amazon's coronavirus prevention efforts, including with regard to sick leave policies and cleaning procedures, as well as raw data on the number of infections and deaths at their facilities in the state.

"To date, Amazon has failed to adequately respond, missing several additional opportunities to comply with the Attorney General's information request," the news release read. "Despite the fact that Amazon has reportedly seen record sales and profits during the pandemic, the company has been unwilling to provide to the California Department of Justice the information needed to adequately demonstrate that it takes the health and well-being of its workers seriously."

The release noted that the Attorney General's investigation is ongoing and no determinations have been made regarding the company's coronavirus protocols, particularly given Amazon's limited responsiveness.

More information on the California Department of Justice's efforts to protect the public during COVID-19 is available on the Attorney General's website.

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