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Amazon CEO and founder Jeff Bezos made a visit to an Amazon fulfillment center and a Whole Foods supermarket to thank the company’s employees for their hard work on the front lines as the globe deals with the coronavirus pandemic.
In the video, which was posted to social media, Bezos can be seen wearing a protective mask, along with a white shirt and jeans. However, the 56-year-old tech titan does not appear to be abiding by social distancing rules put in place by U.S. federal and health officials.
“We’re all incredibly proud of the thousands of our colleagues working on the front lines to get critical goods to people everywhere during this crisis,” Amazon wrote in a tweet accompanying the video.
Fox News has reached out to Amazon with a request for comment on which facilities Bezos visited. Bloomberg reported that Bezos was “in the Dallas area Wednesday,” citing a person familiar with the matter.
Seattle-based Amazon has recently come under scrutiny for alleged lax working conditions at its various warehouses and fulfillment centers around the country.
In March, a group of four U.S. senators, including Sens. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt. and Cory Booker, D-N.J., wrote a letter to Bezos expressing their concern about the health and safety of Amazon warehouse workers.
Former Amazon employee Christian Smalls demanded that the Bezos-led company close its Staten Island fulfillment center for a deep cleaning after a worker tested positive for COVID-19 in mid-March. Smalls, along with allegedly more than 100 workers (a number Amazon disputes), walked off the job at about 12:30 p.m. Monday, the New York Post reported.
According to media reports, Amazon SVP and General Counsel David Zapolsky reportedly described Smalls as “not smart or articulate” at a meeting attended by Bezos and other Amazon executives after Smalls was fired.
Amazon disputed Smalls was fired for standing up for his fellow workers, telling Fox News it terminated him because he violated several terms of his employment.
After the news of Smalls’ termination, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio ordered an investigation into the incident. New York Attorney General Letitia James also issued a statement, saying “it is disgraceful” Smalls was terminated after he “bravely stood up to protect himself and his colleagues.”
The Washington Post, which is also owned by Bezos, reported that Amazon workers at 10 warehouses around the country have tested positive for COVID-19.
Bezos himself has said that he is “wholly focused” on coronavirus, according to a publicly-available letter, in which he thanked his employees for their efforts.
In March, Bezos announced that Amazon was working with the World Health Organization in a number of capacities as the world attempts to tackle the coronavirus pandemic.
As of Thursday morning, more than 1.49 million coronavirus cases have been diagnosed worldwide, more than 432,000 of which are in the U.S., the most impacted country on the planet.