Workers allege sexism and safety risks for Jeff Bezos’ Blue Origin rocket company

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Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and space travel company Blue Origin, near Van Horn, Texas, July 20.

Tony Gutierrez / The Associated Press

A group of more than 20 current and former employees accuse Jeff Bezos’ rocket company Blue Origin of being a toxic work environment and failing to adhere to proper safety protocols.

Workers claim in essay that there is sexism at the Kent, Washington company. The employees, led by former Blue Origin employee communications manager Alexandra Abrams, say “many senior leaders are known to be consistently inappropriate with women.” They also claim that many business leaders were “unreachable” and clearly displayed prejudices against women.

There were also security concerns, with the group saying Blue Origin seemed more focused on beating billionaires Richard Branson and Elon Musk in space rather than tackling security concerns that would have slowed the timeline. .

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Bezos exploded in space on July 21 on the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, a date he chose for its historical significance. Bezos stuck to it, even as Virgin Galactic’s Richard Branson pushed his own flight from New Mexico and beat him in the space of nine days.

The group said that last year, business leaders seemed impatient with the New Shepard rocket’s schedule of a few flights per year, instead of wanting more than 40. It seriously compromised flight safety, ”said they declared.

Blue Origin said in a statement that it does not tolerate any type of harassment or discrimination and is sticking to its safety record. The company said it believes “New Shepard is the safest spacecraft ever designed or built.”

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