A Note by Kevin Estes
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On September 22, 2021, California Governor Gavin Newsom signed into law A.B. 701 intending to further protect the health and safety of warehouse workers in the state of California. Authored by California Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, A.B. 701“strengthen[s] warehouse workers’ rights against arbitrary and abusive work quota systems by requiring companies to disclose work quotas to employees and state agencies, and establish statewide standards to minimize on-the-job injuries for employees working under strict quotas.” Although the bill places restrictions on all single warehouse distribution center with 100 or more employees or 1,000 or more employees at one or more warehouse distribution centers in the state, the bill specifically targets Amazon Inc. and their “extreme high-churn model, continually replacing workers in order to sustain dangerous and grueling work pace demands.” To achieve its purpose, A.B. 701 is the first state legislation that provides protections from AI monitoring systems that thwart basic worker rights such as rest periods, bathroom breaks, and safety.
 CA LEGIS 197 (2021), 2021 Cal. Legis. Serv. Ch. 197 (A.B. 701).
 New California Law Expands Protections for Warehouse Workers, Safety And Health Mag. (Sept. 29, 2021), https://www.safetyandhealthmagazine.com/articles/21762-new-california-law-expands-protections-for-warehouse-workers.
 Assem. Bill No. 701, (CA 2021-2022) Reg. Sess. Version Sep. 08, 2021, at 3 (2021).
 Cal. Lab. Code § 2100(f).
 Assem. Bill No. 701, CA 2021-2022) Reg. Sess. Version Sep. 08, 2021, at 2.
 Amazon’s AI Managers Targeted in California Legislation Meant to Empower Warehouse Workers, Morning, S. China Morning Post (Dec. 21, 2021), https://www.scmp.com/tech/big-tech/article/3161647/amazons-ai-managers-targeted-california-legislation-meant-empower?utm_source=rss_feed.
 Cal. Lab. Code § 2103(a).