American News Oct 2, 2021 12:27 AM EST

Blue Origin employees allege toxic work environment, safety issues

More than 20 people who work or have worked for Blue Origin have banded together to accuse the company of a toxic culture of sexual harassment, and of cutting corners concerning safety standards.

Blue Origin employees allege toxic work environment, safety issues
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More than 20 people who work or have worked for Jeff Bezos' space company Blue Origin have banded together to accuse the company of a toxic culture of sexual harassment, and of cutting corners concerning safety standards.

The ex-workers and workers for the Amazon founder's company are spearheaded by the ex-chief of communications, Alexandra Abrams. Together, they have put together an open letter and published it online.

According to local outlet WRDW, the letter states that "numerous senior leaders have been known to be consistently inappropriate with women." In addition, the letter accuses management of being "unapproachable" on these issues.

Also at issue was the breakneck speed at which the company desired to operate. The company already operates a few rocket launches per year, including the flight on which Bezos himself was on board, and another one on which the famous original "Star Trek" protagonist William Shatner is to be a passenger in.

In what could be called a modern-day space race, Bezos is in close competition with his fellow billionaires Elon Musk (SpaceX) and Richard Branson (Virgin Galactic).

The company, according to the letter, is pushing for up to 40 flights per year. "Some of us felt that with the resources and staff available, leadership’s race to launch at such a breakneck speed was seriously compromising flight safety," the letter states.

Blue Origin released its own statement in response, saying that "New Shepard [the rocket in which Bezos flew] is the safest space vehicle ever designed or built," and that it has a zero-tolerance policy for any type of harassment or discrimination in the workplace.

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