- Amazon told US warehouse staff they no longer have to wear masks if fully vaccinated, CNBC reported.
- Amazon said vaccine availability and rising vaccination rates were behind the policy change.
- The company told workers in August to continue wearing masks even if vaccinated.
Amazon has changed its mask-wearing policy inside warehouses, telling staff they no longer need to wear masks if fully vaccinated, CNBC reported Monday.
A notice sent to US Amazon staff on Friday, reported by CNBC, said: “Vaccines are universally available across the US and vaccination rates continue to rise which enables the ability to return to our previous mask policy.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), almost 70% of the US population aged 18 or more is fully vaccinated.
Amazon confirmed in a statement to Protocol that it would allow fully vaccinated workers not to wear masks unless otherwise specified by federal, state or local laws.
“We continue to evaluate all of our temporary COVID-19 safety measures, making adjustments in alignment with public health authority guidance and our own medical experts to prioritize the health and safety of employees,” Amazon told Protocol.
Amazon did not immediately respond when contacted by Insider for comment.
Amazon stopped regularly testing employees for COVID-19 in July 2021.
Amazon CEO Andy Jassy said in October the paid sick leave policy the company introduced in March 2020 in response to the pandemic “didn’t work the way we wanted it to work.” CNBC reported in April 2020 that some Amazon employees said they were not paid or underpaid despite meeting the criteria for the policy.
In June 2020 three Amazon workers sued the company, claiming its COVID-19 safety policies were inadequate.