Loblaws ends pandemic pay for frontline workers in Canada and people aren't impressed
After months of working tirelessly to provide an essential service throughout the pandemic, Canadians have never been more appreciative and thankful for our grocery store workers.
That's probably why people have been reacting furiously since Loblaws announced plans to end the $2 p/hr extra hazard pay, which their front line staff have been receiving.
Staff at the grocery chain were informed of the decision on Wednesday, June 10, and online opinion since then has been pretty scathing.
@LoblawsON The pandemic pay that employees WERE getting is the least such a large, national company could have done for thier employees. This 2$ raise should be permenant considering loblaws revenue jumped 11% in the first quarter. #stoppovertywages #covid19ON— Panic Soup (@_PanicSoup) June 11, 2020
The angered reaction could be partly down to the fact that Loblaw Companies Ltd. (which owns the Loblaws grocery stores, No Frills and Shoppers Drug Mart) reported first quarter profits of $240 million compared to $198 million in the same quarter last year.
Let's also remember that the Weston's (Loblaws owners) are worth $8 BILLION! You'd need to work 571 MILLION HOURS at minimum wage to make $8 billion.— Dr. Jill Andrew (@JILLSLASTWORD) June 11, 2020
They can afford it. Raise the wages. #onpoli
In a note to employees, Loblaw Companies Ltd. president Sarah Davis explained that "with economies reopening," the business feels that it is the right time to "transition out of our temporary pay premium."
Loblaws was so eager to let everyone know when they gave their employees and extra 2$ an hour, but now that they have taken it away, they’ve gone silent.— Sam (@SLM9461) June 11, 2020
David continued: “I’ve said it again and again ... but it’s worth repeating: I’m extremely proud of all the work our front-line people in stores (did) to help Canadians get through the early and complicated phase of the pandemic."
Instead, the company will be offering a a one-time bonus for workers who’ve been collecting the premium.
"It will work out to approximately two weeks’ worth of the premium per worker," Davis added.
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