Amazon workers in New York celebrate passage of Warehouse Worker Protection Act
Albany, New York - New York Gov. Kathy Hochul on Wednesday signed the Warehouse Worker Protection Act (WWPA) into law, marking a huge win for labor activists.
The WWPA requires companies with warehouses in the state to disclose productivity quotas they place on workers and any disciplinary actions they take if those quotas are not met.
The bill, which is modeled on similar legislation passed in California, was introduced in New York in April 2022 and had broad support from progressive politicians, workers' rights organizations, and labor unions.
The measures are intended to target companies like Amazon and the United Parcel Service (UPS), which have come under fire for grueling working conditions which result in higher injury rates. The new law prevents those companies from firing workers if they have such stringent quotas that employees are unable to take lunch or bathroom breaks.
"Every worker in New York State deserves to be treated with fairness, dignity and respect," Gov. Hochul said in a statement after signing the bill. "As we celebrate the holidays with gifts and packages, I'm proud to sign the Warehouse Worker Protection Act into law to expand protections for hardworking warehouse employees."
State Sen. Jessica Ramos, the bill's primary sponsor, added, "We have made sure that corporations like Amazon and UPS can’t wring all the profits they can out of their employees, leaving the workers to deal with their injuries."
The Amazon Labor Union also celebrated the news, tweeting, "This is a huge win for labor let’s continue fighting for what we deserve!"
Cover photo: MICHAEL M. SANTIAGO / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / GETTY IMAGES VIA AFP