Since 2014, Amazon has offered same-day delivery in select markets, which it eventually expanded to include 27 cities. But not every neighborhood in each cities was treated equally. After the company fielded complaints that some minority neighborhoods were underserved, it coughed up a mea culpa. “Very shortly, we will be expanding Prime Same Day Service to every ZIP code of the 27 cities where Prime Same Day delivery is currently launched,” Amazon said in the statement obtained by the Congressional Black Caucus and shared with Bloomberg News. “We will further not launch the service in any new regions, until we are able to secure a carrier for every ZIP code. We are still figuring out the details and procuring last mile delivery for each of these zips, but we should have 100% coverage shortly.”
Last month, Bloomberg News’ deep dive into the delivery service found that 77.6 million Americans were served by Amazon, but neighborhoods with predominantly minority populations were not getting the same service as nearby areas with white citizens. In Boston, Bloomberg News found that Roxbury, a primarily Black neighborhood, was excluded from the service. Even in a city like Atlanta, where 54% percent of the population is African-American, Bloomberg found that minority neighborhoods were underserved. According to Bloomberg, Amazon decided which areas to serve based on the concentration of Amazon Prime members, as well as warehouse locations. Since the Bloomberg report and calls by members of the Black Caucus for investigation by the Federal Trade Commission, Amazon has responded by expanding the service in some of those underserved neighborhoods, including Chicago’s South Side and Boston’s Roxbury.