Kroger To Close Seattle Stores To Avoid Law Requiring Hazard Pay For Employees

Kroger made headlines last month when it closed stores in Long Beach, California, in response to the city’s law requiring hazard pay for workers.

And now Kroger is doing the same in Seattle.

According to CBS News, “Kroger-owned grocery chain Quality Food Centers will close two stores in Seattle next month due in part to a new law requiring ‘hazard pay’ for frontline grocery employees who have continued to work during the coronavirus pandemic.

Two QFC stores will shut down on April 24, a decision ‘accelerated by a new Seattle city council mandate that requires certain employers to provide extra pay for some, but not all, city frontline workers,’ QFC said Tuesday in a statement.

The decision drew a rebuke from one member of the council, which unanimously approved the law ordering larger grocery chains to temporarily boost worker pay by $4 an hour.”

At least 170 grocery workers have died from COVID-19 since the pandemic started. Thousands more have been infected.

Kroger has enjoyed soaring sales during the pandemic, bringing in $2.6 billion in profits. Its CEO received compensation of over $21 million.

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