In an attempt to help employees with their work/life balance amid the coronavirus, Amazon has offered its workers a temporary “backup” child-care benefit.
On June 2, Amazon announced plans to provide extra benefits after several employees had called for the company to do more for their workers. According to CNBC, from June 2 through October 2, every one of Amazon’s 650,000 full and part-time U.S. employees will have access to 10 days of subsidized emergency backup child or adult care. The offer has been extended to all Amazon and Whole Foods employees.
Amazon was pressured by more than 1,800 workers to step up and do more for workers who are juggling work and family. The company is providing backup child care in response to the challenges workers are experiencing during the pandemic crisis, the company told the news outlet.
In a press release posted on Amazon’s blog, the company outlined its decision to offer the new temporary benefit. Amazon mentioned that it had heard from employees who were having difficulty meeting the needs of both work and those in their care – both children and adults requiring elder care.
Senior Vice President of Human Resources Beth Galetti said in a statement that the new option would be an addition to the current benefits the company offers to its staff.
Amazon said that it would be using Care.com, a company that that helps families find child care, senior care, and special-needs care for their loved ones. The use of Care.com will give Amazon’s workers the ability to request backup child care online or through the company’s official app.
According to the details the company has released, Amazon will cover more than 90 percent of the cost of the child-care service. Employees will be required to pay a small co-pay of $25 per day for any in-center service, or $5 per hour for any in-home adult or child care. The company said it is allotting 10 full days per employee under the subsidized benefit.
Amazon said it would invest “several million dollars” over the next few months to extend this relief to its workers during the coronavirus pandemic. Amazon was upfront in acknowledging that its new benefit was a direct result of hearing feedback and concerns from employees – specifically a group of mothers who called themselves “Momazonians,” or moms who work at Amazon.
“They told us that helping them access affordable quality childcare was a top priority for families during this time,” the company wrote in its blog.
As previously reported, Amazon has been criticized over how it handled workers who were battling coronavirus.