BOONE, Iowa (KCRG) - A major Iowa-based grocery store chain will be giving extra benefits to its employees during the increased business from people stocking up due to the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Fareway Stores, Inc., announced the plan to give extra paid time off and cash bonuses to its hourly employees on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. Officials said it was a reflection on the job their workers have done in the face of the increased shopping at its stores as the threat of COVID-19 grew.
“Our Fareway Family on the frontline have worked tirelessly to serve our customers during these last several weeks,” Reynolds W. Cramer, Fareway President and CEO, said, in a statement. “Our part-time and full-time store employees, office support, warehouse personnel, and transportation department have risen to the challenge. Whether it’s additional cash in their pocket, or paid time-off to be with family or friends, we want to reward these hourly employees for their hard work and willingness to fulfill the new expectations of our customers now and into the future.”
Part-time employees over 18 years old will get 20 more hours of paid time off, full-time employees are eligible for 40 more hours, and assistant managers and warehouse forepersons get 47 more hours. These can either be used as time away from work or paid out as a cash payment.
Employees under 18 years old will receive a cash bonus.
The company said that the benefit to employees could be as much as $1,200. The total cost to the company will be "several million dollars" when applied to the nearly 8,500 employees who are eligible.
The benefits will begin to be distributed on Friday, April 3, according to company officials.