Photo of the Month: December 2014

This month’s photo depicts an Amazon warehouse during the Holiday Season as many temporary workers are brought on through a staffing agency. Inc. employees process customer orders at the company's fulfillment center ahead of Cyber Monday in Tracy, California, U.S., on Sunday, Nov. 30, 2014. In 2005, retailers coined the term 'Cyber Monday' to describe a surge in web purchases on the first work day after Thanksgiving by people who had spent the weekend browsing in stores. Photographer: David Paul Morris/Bloomberg via Getty Images



During the Holiday Season major retail companies such as Amazon hire temporary workers to compensate for the huge spike in orders, breaking record sales numbers this year. However, the conditions these and full time employees face has been criticized in the media as exploitative and unfair.

Hamilton Nolan at Gawker shares a temporary employee’s experience at an Amazon warehouse before Christmas, a very optimistic account of the difficult work and chaos of it all: (Warning: adult language)

Yeah, it can be hard work. Today they set the quota—22 picks in your first 15 minutes. Next week? Ever seen Hudsucker Proxy? There's a scene where the main character gets his orientation. It's pretty dead on funny, cuz it's so dead on. Anyway, I don't mind the running around. I can handle it. But, it's go go go. You have to have stamina.

In an article highlighted by a previous In Case You Missed It post, a former Amazon employee aptly expresses her opinion in the title 'Being homeless is better than working for Amazon.'

Warehouse employees across the country had tried to sue the staffing company Integrity Staffing Solutions over lost wages during mandatory theft prevention screenings. Though the case went to the Supreme Court, workers lost the fight as the court ruled the theft screenings were not an integral part of the job.

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