Message to Walmart: Please send your elderly employees home with pay. You can afford it. They can’t. They are stuck between two terrible choices—get sick or skip the paycheck.
Walmart in our area was packed today. Masses of people were jammed in trying to get toilet paper, soda and water. When I left I said bye to one of my favorite old greeters. He’s a sweet old guy, probably in his 80s but he’s always smiling and cracking a joke, even while checking receipts in the madhouse.
After I left it hit me. This poor man is in the highest risk for fatality from COVID-19… and he is put in a position where he has to touch the receipts of hundreds of people. From the CDC:
“From the analysis of death cases, it emerged that the demographic profile was mainly male, accounting for 2/3, females accounting for 1/3, and is mainly elderly, more than 80% are elderly over 60 years old…*”
Kansas City and Independence have both declared a state of emergency. It’s common knowledge that people infected with COVID-19 are walking around with no symptoms. For most of us, we will be fine. We are might be spreading it unaware.
For the elderly and medically at risk workers that Walmart hires as door greeters… please let them go home with paid sick leave. Don’t make them choose between life or bills. These guys fall through the cracks on the good days. While we’re all distracted with panic, we have to remember them too.
I’m sending an email to ask them to remember their many elderly employees during this crisis. Their Customer Service team can be contacted at 1-800-925-6278 (1-800-WALMART) or firstname.lastname@example.org.