Jobs created and a demo held at Amazon in Fife

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Amazon has announced that it is looking for thousands of workers to work at its Fife base over the Christmas and New Year period.

The company has already started recruiting seasonal employees for its Dunfermline fulfilment centre and is looking for a total of 4000 to help cover the festive period.

The online retail giant said it will take on 20,000 in seasonal roles across the UK as it anticipates its biggest Christmas period ever.

On Black Friday last year, Amazon.co.uk sold more than 7.4 million items, at a rate of around 86 items per second.

John Tagawa, Amazon’s vice president of UK Operations, said: “The thousands of seasonal associates who join us at this time each year play an integral role in helping us deliver an exceptional experience for our customers during the Christmas season.

“We look forward to welcoming back the people who join us each and every Christmas as well as many new faces who will be joining the Amazon team for the first time.”

He added: “As we continue to grow our network, there will be opportunities for people who join us in seasonal roles to transfer to permanent positions.

“I am delighted that more than 2000 people who worked for Amazon in seasonal positions last Christmas are now in permanent roles.”

But the company was forced to defend itself over allegations of “Dickensian work practices” during a demonstration at it’s Dunfermline premises last week.

Tam Kirby of the Fife People’s Assembly Against Austerity, said there were similarities between Amazon and Sports Direct.

He said: “It’s the same six strikes and you’re out, the same constant fear of being sacked, the same use of zero hours and short term contracts, use of the same employment agencies, and the complete anti-union position of the company and the agencies it uses.”

A spokesman for Amazon said: “We care for and value our employees and maintain a culture of direct dialogue with them. “People are employed in a range of positions, from operations managers to engineers, HR and IT roles to employees who will handle orders at the fulfilment centres.

“Amazon employees do not have zero hour contracts. Currently over 95 per cent of temporary employees work a 40-hour week.

“Outside of the Christmas period, the majority of our total UK fulfilment centre workforce is made up of permanent employees.

“Like most companies, Amazon also has a fair and predictable system to record employee attendance.”

“Amazon is proud to be a significant contributor to the economy in Scotland.”