Amazon is installing phonebooth-sized boxes for exhausted employees to meditate, receive positive affirmations, and listen to calming sounds

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Amazon is installing phonebooth-sized boxes for exhausted employees to meditate, receive positive affirmations, and listen to calming sounds
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.Shannon Stapleton/Reuters
  • Amazon released images of its 'AmaZen' booths - kiosks for workers to reflect on their mental health.
  • The tiny booth offers warehouse employees guided meditation videos and calming sounds.
  • Amazon announced a $300 million employee wellness program earlier this month.

Amazon released images this week of its new "AmaZen" booths, tiny cubicles designed for its warehouse employees to "focus on their mental and emotional wellbeing."

The "interactive kiosk" would allow workers to take time out of their shifts to watch short videos, featuring positive affirmations, calming sounds, and guided meditations, Amazon said in a press release.

"Self care is important," Amazon employee Kate Miller said in the press release. "AmaZen gives me an opportunity to take time for myself to just pause and regroup which helps me be better at work."

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Amazon originally released a video on Twitter showcasing the new booths on Wednesday, but later deleted the tweet.

Recordings of the video are still available to find on YouTube and Twitter, where users have mocked the AmaZen concept. One user called the booths "dystopian," and others said the retail giant should instead focus on improving pay and working conditions.

The online retail giant launched $300 million "WorkingWell" program last week, which is intended to help workers "recharge and reenergize, and ultimately reduce the risk of injury," the company said in a May 17 press release. The company said the program is designed to help Amazon achieve its mission of being "the Earth's safest place to work."

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Amazon has for many years faced criticism over working conditions for its warehouse staffers and delivery drivers. A 2019 Insider investigation based on the accounts of 30 current and former Amazon workers described a "brutal" reality of long hours, physical labor, fears about taking time off, workplace injuries, and the pressure to keep the wheels turning, even when the weather is treacherous during the holidays. Amazon said at the time it was proud of its "great working conditions, wages and benefits, and career opportunities."

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, who recently announced he would step down in July, defended employee working conditions in his 2020 letter to shareholders.

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