The home office. Photo: Getty

In one of the biggest remote hiring pushes in memory, Amazon has 3,000 jobs open for remote customer service representatives. But there are caveats.

Between the lines: The Amazon customer service jobs, available in 18 states, are temporary, a company spokesperson said, with no career ladder. And they will be just an average of 20–29 hours per week at $15 an hour, which is the company's minimum wage.

  • The description also requires applicants to have a basic level of internet access, which, Christina Stacy of the Urban Institute says, can be a barrier for many of the people who live too far away from jobs.
  • 58% of Americans living in rural areas say access to high-speed internet is a problem in their area, per Pew.
  • The job does, however, offer health benefits after 90 days of employment, something that is rare for such jobs, says Stacy.

Amazon already has its hand in a very different kind of remote work: Companies use its Mechanical Turk platform to find freelancers for small, usually menial online tasks, for which they pay very little. The crowdsourcing platform had half a million registered workers in 2015.

Why it matters: As we've reported, a much overlooked reason why millions of Americans are out of work is that they live too far from jobs, and they either can't afford to or are unwilling to move.

  • For these job seekers, remote work can be an ideal solution. "[Amazon] could be an example of how technological change can be a source of upward mobility for people who don't live near opportunity," says Stacy.
  • The work-from-home movement also benefits single parents and those with disabilities who might not be able to easily leave their homes for work, says Stacy.

Go deeper

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Global: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 12,528,449 — Total deaths: 560,921 — Total recoveries — 6,907,072Map.
  2. U.S.: Total confirmed cases as of 10:30 a.m. ET: 3,187,270 — Total deaths: 134,117 — Total recoveries: 983,185 — Total tested: 38,856,341Map.
  3. Public health: We're losing the war on the coronavirusThe reality of the coronavirus bites.
  4. Business: Trump says he's no longer considering phase-two trade deal with China because the pandemic damaged the two countries' relationship — How the coronavirus pandemic boosted alternative meat.
  5. 🎧 Podcast: Rural America has its own coronavirus problem.

Romney calls Stone commutation "historic corruption"

Sen. Mitt Romney. Photo: Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images

Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) on Saturday tweeted a scathing response to President Trump's Friday night commutation of former associate Roger Stone's prison sentence, calling the move "[u]nprecedented, historic corruption."

Why it matters: Romney has emerged as the party's most prominent Trump critic. He sent shockwaves through Washington after announcing he would vote to convict Trump in the impeachment trial — becoming the only Senate Republican to break ranks and vote for the president's removal from office. Now he is the first major GOP lawmaker to condemn Trump's Friday night call regarding Stone.

5 hours ago - Health

We're losing the war on the coronavirus

Chart: Danielle Alberti/Axios

By any standard, no matter how you look at it, the U.S. is losing its war against the coronavirus.

Why it matters: The pandemic is not an abstraction, and it is not something that’s simmering in the background. It is an ongoing emergency ravaging nearly the entire country, with a loss of life equivalent to a Sept. 11 every three days — for four months and counting.