An employee outside of a Target store in Clifton, NJ
Adam Jeffery | CNBC
Target will join a growing list of companies offering additional wages and other incentives to encourage employees to get a Covid-19 vaccine.
The retail chain announced on Wednesday that it will offer all of its hourly employees up to four hours of wages if they receive the two recordings. It also covers the cost of a Lyft ride up to $ 15 each way at the vaccination appointment. And work is underway to get CVS or other vendors to dose workers in CVS pharmacies in their branches or at Target distribution centers.
The goal is to have more than 350,000 part-time and full-time employees across the country who are eligible. It won’t require employees to receive the vaccine, a company spokesman said.
“As more vaccines become available, especially for frontline workers and key employees, we will help our team members across the country get the information and access they need,” said Melissa Kremer, Chief Human Resources Officer, Target , in a company blog post.
So far, a limited supply of vaccine doses has kept more Americans from getting the shots. However, as the supply increases, community groups, local executives and companies face new challenges. You need to convince some Americans to get the vaccines or help them overcome potential obstacles such as lack of childcare, transportation, or free time from work.
More than a dozen companies have announced incentives as part of their strategy. The discounters Aldi, Dollar General and Trader Joe’s offer a total of four hours of wages for the two cans. Lidl is giving $ 200 to people who get the shots. Kroger said there will be a one-time payment of $ 100. Several other companies, including Chobani, Amtrak, Darden, and McDonald’s, have also announced cash payments.
Some companies may need the vaccine instead of incentivizing it. Scott Kirby, United Airlines CEO, said he wanted to give the shots for the company’s 60,000+ employees and believes other companies should do the same.
Grocery store and bulk store workers were especially on the forefront of the pandemic as they worked on the cash register, assisted customers, and stocked shelves in narrow aisles. When restaurants and malls closed in the spring, their stores stayed open to provide groceries, cleaning supplies, and other essentials. Some of these workers got sick and died of Covid-19.
A major food union, the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, released a new list of workers in its union who have either gotten sick or died Tuesday. More than 30,100 food workers are said to have been infected or exposed to Covid-19 and at least 137 food workers have died. This does not include workers in grocery stores, distribution centers, or other non-unionized grocery-related workplaces such as Target, Walmart, Amazon’s Whole Foods, and Trader Joe’s.
The union has urged workers in food and meat packers to have priority access to the vaccine.
Target didn’t say how many Covid-19 employees got sick. During the pandemic, the retailer has offered hourly workers additional wages and additional coronavirus-related perks like paid vacation, with an emphasis on safety. It accelerated plans to raise the minimum hourly wage to $ 15. Last month, about $ 200 million was spent on another round of employee bonuses.
In the last round, Target said it had spent $ 1 billion more on employees in 2020 than in 2019.