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Amazon criticised for mental health booth

an AmaZen booth
an AmaZen booth Image credit: bbc.co.uk/

When Amazon launched their special booth for employees to unwind and protect their wellbeing the e-commerce firm they believed they were doing the right thing, but they were unprepared for the backlash.

The ‘AmaZen’ is a billed as an interactive “Mindful Practice Room” which shows videos on “mental health and mindful practices”.

During lockdown there was a surge in Amazon orders, this was great for the business but put more pressure on the workers.

Noticing the added strain Amazon employee Leila Brown created a mental health booth so staff could take time out from their busy day, relax and learn about how to protect their well-being.

Brown said: “With AmaZen I wanted to create a space that’s quiet, that people could go and focus on their mental and emotional well-being.

“The ZenBooth is an interactive kiosk where you can navigate through a library of mental health and mindful practices to recharge the internal battery.”

But the booth has been criticised by its employees who see the room interfering with their workers’ rights to form unions.

There have been protests and walkouts at Amazon warehouses in Chicago, New York, Minneapolis, Iowa, California, Oregon and Pennsylvania after staff have complained they are working so hard they do not have time to visit the bathroom and forced to pee in plastic bottles.

The row spread across social media with people expressing their thoughts on the AmaZen booths.

One wrote: “Or you could pay your employees well, not treat them like garbage, and accept unionisation.”

Another tweeted: “Imagine working for a company so dystopian where conditions are so awful that they need to put a cry closet in the middle of the floor, and the company tries to sell it as a badge of honour.”

A third bluntly suggested: “Maybe just pay people a living wage instead?!?”

Amazon was almost called Relentless, if you type in relentless.com today it will still forward you to Amazon's homepage.