SHAKOPEE, Minn. (WCCO/AP) — State health officials say the Amazon fulfillment center in Shakopee has one of the larger coronavirus outbreaks in a warehouse or distribution plant setting.
At least 88 of its approximately 1,000 workers have tested positive for the disease caused by the virus. Another 99 workers at other Amazon sites in the Twin Cities have also tested positive since COVID-19 arrived in Minnesota, for 187 total cases.
The department of health says Amazon employees also tested positive at the Eagan, maple grove and Brooklyn Park plants. There were also some Amazon employees who tested positive in Minnesota, but didn’t disclose their plant location. These positive cases didn’t happen all at once but started showing up at the end of April, with the majority of them in May and also a few in June so far.
“I work with 1,000 other people, many of them older, many of them in different conditions that would make them vulnerable, and I really worry that Amazon isn’t doing enough to stop the spread to workers who are vulnerable,” Shakopee Amazon employee William Stoltz said. “What I really think they should do is offer paid leave to people with conditions that put them at a greater risk.”
Kris Ehresmann, director of infectious disease for the Minnesota Health Department, said state officials are reaching out to employers when clusters at workplaces begin to emerge and are providing guidance to mitigate the spread of the disease.
WCCO has reached out to Amazon for comment.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)