Trader Joe’s Employees Are Worried About Catching The Virus

Employees at three Trader Joe’s locations are growing more and more concerned about catching COVID-19, Gothamist reports. Workers from stores in Murray Hill, SoHo, and on the Upper West Side tell Gothamist that cleanings haven’t been thorough, employee break rooms are not properly ventilated, and safety precautions like social distancing and mask-wearing are no longer being enforced among shoppers.

It isn’t specified whether the employees interviewed work at both UWS locations or just one, but a worker at the TJ’s on 93rd and Columbus told Gothamist that “They almost fired someone who insisted on wearing a mask at the beginning, before there was a mask mandate.” Another UWS worker told the outlet that “at least four of their coworkers have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last two weeks.”

Back in March, the UWS Trader Joe’s on 72nd and Broadway temporarily closed when a crew member tested positive, but this no longer seems to be the protocol.

Another UWS employee said they’re “… just concerned I’m gonna go to work and get infected and this is a job I have to do to keep my health insurance,” adding that they “…just can’t take time off.”

A common theme among TJ’s employees is being too afraid to voice these concerns to management, the Gothamist article states.

On November 20, Trader Joe’s re-published an announcement (from March) titled “Coronavirus Update: How Trader Joe’s is Caring for Crew Members and Customers” on its corporate website. One of the precautions outlined in the announcement states that Trader Joe’s has “temporarily closed some stores related to COVID-19 concerns, including for additional precautionary cleaning and sanitization,” though exact locations and timelines are not specified.

How have your recent experiences at the UWS TJ’s been? Have you felt comfortable? Leave a comment below or start a forum thread about it!



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