Amazon temporarily shut down a warehouse construction site in Connecticut on Friday after a noose was found hanging over a beam, the seventh in a series of incidents police called potential hate crimes.
A rope tied like a noose was discovered on Wednesday at the site in Windsor, 16 kilometres north of Hartford, prompting an intensified law enforcement investigation.
Amazon said in a statement that it had decided to close the site until Monday so that additional security measures can be put in place.
“We continue to be deeply disturbed by the incidents happening at the construction site in Windsor,” Amazon said.
“Hate, racism and discrimination have no place in our society and are certainly not tolerated in an Amazon workplace.”
Windsor police said they were working with the FBI and state police. A reward has been doubled to $100,000 for information leading to the identification of the culprits. The first noose was found at the site last month.
Leaders of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) joined with state and local officials at a news conference outside the site to condemn “racist acts”.
“We’re here to make sure that people are safe,” said Scot Esdaile, president of the state NAACP.
“We’re making sure that the voices are heard and that this situation is dealt with in a professional and adequate way.”
Carlos Best, an iron worker and foreman at the site, said he had heard racist remarks there, including some made by a worker that he fired.
“Personally, on this job here, I have seen a lot of racism,” he said at the news conference. “This is not the only construction site that these things occur on, and it has to stop.”—AP