Western Canada’s largest private-sector union is proposing that people be limited to one trip to the grocery store each week to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among customers and workers.
Tom Hesse, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers 401, which represents 32,000 workers, said governments should also bring in regulations that allow only one person per family in a store at a time.
“We’re going to ask for clear rules that are enforceable with fines in a regulatory regime. The fact of the matter is we can’t let these places become nursing homes and it’s just a free-for-all in these grocery stores right now,” Hesse told The Canadian Press.
And now United Food and Commercial Workers is pulling this same routine in America.
“Careless customers” are “probably the biggest threat” to workers right now, according to Marc Perrone, president of the United Food and Commercial Workers’ union. The union said 85% of its grocery store member workers reported that customers are not practicing social distancing in stores.
“Anything that reduces the need for interaction with the public and allows for greater physical distancing will ultimately better protect grocery workers,” said John Logan, professor and director of Labor and Employment Studies at San Francisco State University. “Shuttering stores and repurposing them for pickup and delivery only would be a positive step.”
Public safety officials are not requiring essential stores to shut down to customers, but the US Labor Department last week recommended that retailers start “using a drive-through window or offering curbside pick-up” to protect workers for exposure to coronavirus. The California Department of Industrial Relations said this week that companies should “encourage customer use of online order and pickup.
And since unions run California, that means that this is coming.
If you’re in a blue lockdown zone, get ready to say goodbye to the supermarket.
How many workers in these stores will end up losing their jobs? Not a problem for unions who see an opportunity for another power grab while tightening their grip on the industry.