Economy

Bernie Sanders Introduces "Stop BEZOS Act" Targeting Big Companies With Low Wages

Bernie Sanders Introduces

The "Stop BEZOS Act", introduced Wednesday, would require large employers, such as Amazon or Walmart, to pay the government for food stamps, public housing, Medicaid and other federal assistance received by their workers. Anecdotes shared by current and former Amazon employees corroborate these findings.

According to public data obtained by the New Food Economy, thousands of Amazon workers are paid such low wages that they are forced to rely on food stamps to provide for themselves and their families.

Sanders refers to CEO Bezos as a "symbol of greed and inequality".

"The Stop Bezos Act gives large employers a choice: pay workers a living wage or pay for the public assistance programs low wage workers are forced to rely upon", the text of the legislation reads.

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The decrease of 0.7% is due to the weakening of activity in agriculture , transport , trade and production and public sectors. South Africa's rand dropped at a 2 percent rate against the U.S. dollar 0 - it's lowest level since early 2016.

"In addition, the legislation would likely lead to substantial corporate lobbying efforts to restrict eligibility and cut benefit levels for core low-income assistance programs, because doing so would reduce companies' tax bills - effectively making a cut in Medicaid, SNAP, school meals, or rental subsidies akin to a direct corporate tax cut", Greenstein wrote.

In addition, Amazon workers' median annual salary past year was $28,446, but this figure includes both full and part-time employees. The only publicly-traded US company valued higher is Apple, with a market cap of $1.1 trillion.

"We do not believe that taxpayers should have to expend huge sums of money subsidizing profitable corporations owned by some of the wealthiest people in this country", continued Sanders, who's partnering with California Rep. Ro Khanna on the bill.

The bill makes it illegal for the company to ask employees if they receive or qualify for federal assistance and leaves it to the Internal Revenue Service, in consultation with other federal agencies, to determine the amount of the tax.

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Amazon, aware of the Vermont senator's plans to launch such a bill, pre-empted the announcement in an August blog post. "It's not hard to imagine that employers would be wary of hiring someone who they think - rightly or wrongly - would invoke the tax".

"Amazon is worth $1 TRILLION", Sanders tweeted Tuesday.

While Sanders has long advocated for strengthening worker protections, including an increase in the minimum wage, Bernstein said the Stop BEZOS Act could end up being counterproductive to that cause. "As I am sure you know, with my very strong support, the state legislature voted to raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour". Full-time warehouse associates get medical, dental and vision benefits from the day they start, and they're the same benefits employees like Lynch get, she says.

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Nor had it made much of a ripple in public discussions on NAFTA, except during some testimony at a few US hearings, experts say. Freeland flew to Washington last week for four days of negotiations to try to keep Canada within the regional trade bloc.


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