Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act
Designing warehouses to protect workers first
New York’s warehouse industry is the fastest-growing industry in New York and the most dangerous for workers, but with little oversight, abusive employers continue to put profit over people. We need to hold employers accountable for workplace safety and design warehouses to protect workers first. Through better job design, safety standards, training, and enforcement, the Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act will keep workers safe on the job and make warehouse work sustainable.
Currently, there is no state or federal law that requires employers to design workplaces to prevent worker injuries. And at warehouses, the risk of injury abounds. Lifting and twisting with heavy boxes can cause muscle strains, sprains, and tendonitis. Warehouse workers are three times more likely to be injured than the average New York worker.
A May 2022 report from our New Yorkers for a Fair Economy coalition revealed that injury rates spiked 64% in Amazon’s New York warehouses while the company doubled its facilities in the state. And serious injury rates at Amazon facilities are 40% higher than at non-Amazon facilities statewide. These injuries are often serious, causing workers to miss time or need a job transfer. They are also preventable. New York must protect workers from dangerous conditions and hold employers accountable for workplace safety.
The New Yorkers for a Fair Economy coalition builds worker power to stand up to abusive corporations, and won legislation last year to bring transparency to secret warehouse quotas that prioritized profit over people. The injury reduction bill is the natural next step: designing warehouses to protect workers first.
Last year, the coalition won the Warehouse Worker Protection Act, revealing exploitative productivity quotas in warehouses across New York and ensuring they don’t interfere with protected breaks. But even if the most abusive quotas are limited, workers can still experience injury in poorly designed workplaces. The Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act is the essential next step in protecting thousands of New York warehouse workers.
The Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act (S5081/A3309) , sponsored by Senator Jessica Ramos and Assemblymember Latoya Joyner, would ensure warehouses protect workers first, requiring employers to implement injury reduction plans to identify and minimize hazards and undergo annual evaluations by safety experts. Through better job design, safety standards, comprehensive worker training, improved on-site medical care, and strong DOL enforcement, the Warehouse Worker Injury Reduction Act will prevent worksite injuries and hold warehouse companies responsible for worker health and safety.
See detailed bill summary here.
List of Current Endorsers
Teamsters Local 118
LDFS Workers United
Teamsters Joint Council 16
Teamsters Local 804
National Employment Law Project
United Auto Workers Region 9A
For The Many
New York Communities for Change
Teamsters Joint Council 18
ACT-UAW Local 7902
Teamsters Joint Council 46
Jobs With Justice
Citizen Action of New York
American Economic Liberties Project
Fight Corporate Monopolies
Coalition for Economic Justice (CEJ Buffalo)
Center for Popular Democracy
Amazon Labor Union
Committee of Interns and Residents
UAW local 1097
Rochester and Genesee Valley Area Labor Federation AFL-CIO
Finger Lakes Occupational Health Services
Western New York Council on Occupational Safety and Health
Mount Sinai Selikoff Centers for Occupational Health
Workers United NY NJ Regional Joint Board
Worker Justice Center of New York
Teamsters local 294
Pride at Work AFL-CIO – Rochester Finger Lakes Chapter
Public Employees Federation Region 3
Rochester Fire Fighters Association, IAFF Local 1071
About New Yorkers for a Fair Economy
New Yorkers for a Fair Economy (NYFE) is a coalition of labor organizations, small businesses, and immigrant and community organizations uniting to safeguard our communities from abusive practices of big corporations and achieve an economy that works for all New Yorkers. NYFE is led by ALIGN (Alliance for a Greater New York) and includes labor unions Teamsters Joint Council 16 and Retail Wholesale, and Department Store Union; community groups like New York Communities for Change and New York Committee for Occupational Safety and Health ; and research and advocacy organizations like National Employment Law Project and Strategic Organizing Center, among others.