Currently, Amazon delivery drivers are expected to deliver upwards of 400 packages a day on 10-hour routes that often extend up to 12 hours. The two Portland delivery companies are demanding a cap at 250 packages and 150 stops per 8.5 hour route. As Motherboard has previously reported, in order to qualify for bonuses and complete their routes on time to avoid discipline, drivers have been forced to suspend safety monitors, run across busy four-lane highways, skip lunch breaks, and pee and defecate in their vans rather than find bathrooms.
The letter says that Amazon forces its delivery companies to commit to routes three weeks in advance but Amazon can change drivers' schedules within a day or less than a day's notice. This forces scheduled drivers to show up to work without actual work to do, and companies to pay drivers' wages for days when they didn't deliver packages.
A new program also allows Amazon to increase or decrease routes each day by 10 percent without any advance notice to delivery companies—forcing them to eat the cost of extra scheduled drivers, according to the letter.