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Several employees at the Loblaws location at Christie and Dupont have tested positive for COVID-19. In response, the store will be closed as of today, Monday, May 11, 2020.
The store will continue online pickup orders only -- according to a recent email sent to customers, as well as social media posts to Twitter and Facebook. The pharmacy will also remain open for pickup and delivery during regular pharmacy hours.
In an email to customers, the company wrote that they are taking measures to ensure employees follow public health recommendations to avoid the spread of COVID-19. In a statement on Facebook, the grocery chain wrote, "We’ve been working closely with public health to make sure the risk to our customers remains low." Currently, Public Health Ontario is investigating the contacts of the staff members who tested positive. Loblaws asks that potentially exposed team members stay home and self-isolate.
This particular store has shutdown and reopened multiple times over the last few weeks and has been criticized publicly for underreporting cases and not taking the appropriate public health recommendations to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Several customers have taken to social media to express the lack of proper protective equipment worn by employees at this location.
Threads of comments on Facebook and Twitter accuse management of failing to implement proper safety procedures. The primary complaint seems to be poor handling of outbreaks that may be putting staff and customers at risk.
Loblaws sent an email to customers on April 17, April 29 and May 2, concerning probable COVID-19 cases involving staff members. This will be the fourth closure in the last few weeks.
Usually, when a staff member at a grocery store tests positive, the store undergoes a thorough cleaning and is permitted to reopen the following day. In this case, it is unclear what will happen, as multiple outbreaks have have continuously been reported at the Christie and Dupont location.
Loblaws ensures that management is working with public health to ensure that safety measures are being properly implemented. If the store reopens, Loblaws will ensure all employees wear protective masks to minimize the spread of COVID-19.