As grocery stores continue to be busy during the COVID-19 pandemic, Thrifty Foods will be taking additional measures, including the installation of plexiglass shields, to protect its employees.
It was announced earlier today that Empire Co. Ltd., which owns Thrifty Foods as well as Sobeys and Safeway, has started to install plexiglass shields at locations across the country with the goal of having them in every store as soon as possible.
“We understand we are an essential service to all Canadians, and we want you to know that we are doing everything in our power to maintain our stores to the highest standard of cleanliness and safety,” Empire’s president and CEO, Michael Medline, said in an open letter to customers.
According to Medline, the plexiglass shields “stand out” as a strong safety measure. The company also outlined that it will take some time to get them installed and the shields won’t be in every store immediately, but they have teams “working around the clock.”
In addition to the plexiglass shields, Thrifty Foods will be taking additional measures. Employees will be required to wash their hands every fifteen minutes, resources are being added to frontline in order to allow cashiers to wipe down common areas more frequently, and floor markers are being added to check out areas to help maintain a two-meter distance between customers.
On top of that, the store hours will be limited from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. in order to give employees more time for sanitation and restocking shelves.
All of these new measures are being added to the ones currently taken by the company, which include:
- Redistribution of employees throughout the store in order to step up cleaning practices
- Allocating the first hour of the day to seniors, “providing the most vulnerable among us with a dedicated time to shop for goods.”
- A halt in sales of all bulk baked goods and bulk foods, while closing the self-service area
- All product demos have been stopped for the indefinite future
“Thank you to our fantastic store, distribution and transportation team for the enormous efforts and passion they bring to their jobs. They have never been so important to their fellow Canadians. Together, we will all get through this,” said Medline.
Other Island grocery stores including Save-On-Foods have also taken precautionary steps during this time like banning reusable bags.