As tech-giant Amazon enforces its return-to-office mandate, some employees at the company's headquarters in Seattle announced a planned walkout as frustrations grow.
Sent internally through an email, employees said they planned to "walk off the job" on May 31.
One employee told KOMO News the scheduled walkout was set to happen during the lunch hour.
"I got an email about it, they are trying to gather a ton of employees to walk out, I don't think I'll do it," Amazon employee Shashwdah J said. "It's hard for people who moved out of the city, who now have to commute but have responsibilities."
Many workers said the protest comes as the company mandates its employees to return to the office following COVID-19, layoffs, and the company's impact on climate change.
The Washington Post first reported on the plans Monday noting the action hinges on at least 1,000 Seattle employees agreeing to participate in the one-day walkout
In a statement from an Amazon spokesperson, the company writes, "We respect our employees’ rights to express their opinions.”
Amazon has cut 27,000 jobs since November. The layoffs have affected workers in advertising, human resources, gaming, stores, devices, and Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud computing division.
"I don't mind," Amazon employee Janelle Delaney said. "I started in the middle of the pandemic so I didn't get the chance to meet people and connect, so I don't have an issue with it. I know people are not happy about it."
Announcing the mandate in February, CEO Andy Jassy said it’s easier to “learn, model, practice and strengthen our culture when we’re in the office together most of the time and surrounded by our colleagues.”
Jassy went on to say that it is easier for leaders to teach when they have a room full of people and that employees can ask "ad-hoc questions" on the way to lunch or in the elevator.
Several big tech companies with hubs in Washington recently laid off thousands of employees.
In February, hundreds of Microsoft employees in Redmond, Bellevue, and Issaquah have been given their 60-day notice. Those layoffs started on April 10.
"I see stuff like this in tech all the time," Amazon employee Drew Peneton said. "There has been some great hiring in the last few years but there will always be change in every industry."
Amazon was not the first to mandate an office return. In January, Starbucks also announced its employees would need to return to the Seattle-area headquarters at least three days a week.
“For me, I try to stay flexible, my family is flexible, so just do what is best," Peneton said. "I imagine anybody that was hit with a surprise that they weren’t planning on, regardless of what you are doing, is something that could be frustrating”