Editor's note: This story includes imagery that could be disturbing to readers.
- A noose and other ropes were found last week at the construction site of an Amazon fulfillment center in Windsor, Connecticut, adding to a wave of racist incidents at commercial jobsites across North America reported in the last year.
- A site supervisor reported the discovery of a hangman's noose suspended from a steel beam on the second floor of the Amazon site April 27, according to a news release from the Windsor Police Department emailed to Construction Dive. On April 29, five additional ropes that could be construed as nooses were found at various locations around the jobsite, which police collected as evidence.
- The incident triggered reactions from the online retail giant, the project's general contractor, the local chapter of the NAACP and Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont, who ordered state police involvement in the investigation.
Fairfield, New Jersey-based general contractor RC Andersen is offering a $5,000 reward for information about the perpetrators.
"RC Andersen condemns these abhorrent acts of racism and we are actively working with law enforcement authorities to identify those responsible and bring them to justice," read a statement emailed to Construction Dive. "As this is an active and ongoing police investigation, we are unable to comment further at this time."
Lamont also denounced the act, saying in a statement that he supports a full investigation into the incident to ensure those responsible are "held accountable to the fullest extent of the law," according to Hartford affiliate Fox 61 News.
In a statement emailed to Construction Dive, Kelly Nantel, an Amazon spokesperson, said, "We’re deeply disturbed by this incident. Hate, racism or discrimination have no place in our society and are certainly not tolerated in any Amazon workplace — whether it be under construction like this one, or fully operational."
In a statement posted to its Facebook page, the Hartford chapter of the NAACP said, "The noose found at the construction site sends the message of a clear threat to African Americans and those of color who are working at the site, one which cannot be ignored. We further demand that every available measure be put in place to ensure the safety of all workers at the site."
The Amazon noose discovery follows at least 20 similar cases at construction sites since last spring, and it is strikingly similar to incidents at the Michael Garron jobsite near Toronto, Canada, where at least four nooses were found.
In that case, general contractor EllisDon, which reported $4.4 billion in revenues in 2019, offered a $5,000 reward for information. But after no leads materialized, Michael Garron Hospital CEO Sarah Downey publicly lambasted the contractor for not doing enough to stop racist acts at the site in an open letter.
EllisDon subsequently upped its reward to $50,000, and a subcontractor on the job was arrested in connection with the crime in December.