Amazon Cuts Covid Paid Time Off for Workers as CDC Guidelines Change

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Amazon is reducing paid time off for U.S. frontline workers who test positive for Covid-19 or must self-quarantine after exposure to the virus.

Amazon said all U.S. workers who test positive for Covid-19 and those to be quarantined will now be entitled to a week, or up to 40 hours, of paid time off, according to an employee notice, which has been consulted by CNBC.

An Amazon spokesperson confirmed the policy change.

Amazon initially offered up to two weeks’ pay for any employee diagnosed with Covid-19 or placed in quarantine, but then reduced their paid leave to ten days, per guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The company said it was adjusting its policy after “reviewing new guidelines” from the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which reduced isolation requirements for asymptomatic people with Covid from 10 days to five days . The updated recommendations also reduced the time it takes to quarantine close contacts.

Amazon is following in the footsteps of Walmart, the country’s largest private employer, which said on Wednesday it would cut paid vacation time related to the pandemic in half.

Amazon and other companies’ approaches to the virus have changed several times as the pandemic spread and new variants of Covid emerge. Amazon recently reinstated its mandate to mask all American workers, regardless of vaccination status, due to the highly contagious variant of omicron.

LOOK: CDC faces backlash after revised quarantine guidelines

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