Amazon Workers Walk Off Job, Say the Company Cut Break Times Because the Pandemic Is 'Supposedly' Over Dozens of employees at two Chicago-area facilities ditched work during the final stretch of holiday deliveries.

By Amanda Breen

Dozens of Amazon employees at two Chicago-area facilities walked off the job during the final stretch of holiday deliveries on Wednesday, citing the company's shortened break times and unwillingness to increase wages, Business Insider reports.

The walkouts took place at Amazon's delivery centers in Gage Park and Cicero, according to the Chicago Tribune. A video from Amazonians United Chicagoland, a group representing local Amazon workers, was posted to Facebook, explaining the demands.

"We're here demanding a $5 increase for our wages, and as well, a return to the 20-minute breaks that we had during the pandemic," said a worker. According to the same employee, Amazon had cut five minutes from their break time because the pandemic was "supposedly" over despite confirmation of three new cases the day before.

Related: Amazon Workers in New York City Target a Union Vote

Amazon has said it will not retaliate against workers who took part in the protest. "We respect the rights of employees to protest and recognize their legal right to do so," Amazon spokesman Richard Rocha told Insider. "We are proud to offer employees leading pay, competitive benefits, and the opportunity to grow with our company."

According to the company, starting wages at the two Chicago-area facilities are approximately $16 an hour.

Amazon has been accused of permitting dangerous working conditions during the pandemic and underreporting the number of positive Covid cases among its employees. The company also made headlines recently when a tornado struck its Edwardsville, Illinois facility, leaving six Amazon workers dead. Just before the tornado hit, an Amazon driver was told by a supervisor to continue delivering packages during the life-threatening storm or risk losing her job.

Related: An Amazon Driver Was Told She Would Be Fired If She Didn't Continue Delivering Packages Despite Tornado Warnings: Report

Wavy Line
Amanda Breen

Entrepreneur Staff

Features Writer

Amanda Breen is a features writer at She is a graduate of Barnard College and received an MFA in writing at Columbia University, where she was a news fellow for the School of the Arts.

Editor's Pick

She's Been Coding Since Age 7 and Presented Her Life-Saving App to Tim Cook Last Year. Now 17, She's on Track to Solve Even Bigger Problems.
I Helped Grow 4 Unicorns Over 10 Years That Generated $18 Billion in Online Revenues. Here's What I've Learned.
Want to Break Bad Habits and Supercharge Your Business? Use This Technique.
Don't Have Any Clients But Need Customer Testimonials? Follow These 3 Tricks To Boost Your Rep.
Why Are Some Wines More Expensive Than Others? A Top Winemaker Gives a Full-Bodied Explanation.

Related Topics

Business News

'All Hell Is Going to Break Loose': Barbara Corcoran Issues Warning About Real Estate Market, Interest Rates

The "Shark Tank" star appeared on FOX Business' "The Claman Countdown" this week.

Growing a Business

Entrepreneur+ Subscribers-Only Call | June 8: Discover How These 2 Founders Turned Their Side Hustle into a Million-Dollar Lifestyle Brand

Learn how you can transform your personal brand into a thriving business empire with co-founders of The Skinny Confidential

Business Plans

How to Change Careers: A Step-by-Step Guide

Want to make a career change without compromising your finances or future? Check out this step-by-step guide on how to change careers to learn more.


How I Made Money From My Book Without Selling a Single Copy

Did you know you can make money with a book without selling copies? Here's exactly how I did it.