The group "Whole Worker," which describes itself as a "grassroots movement of WFM team members collectively voicing our experiences at Whole Foods and working to unionize," announced the plans onTwitter, saying: "We call on Whole Foods Market employees to engage in a mass sick out on March 31 #GlobalSickOut #March31st #RetailMarchMadness."
The tweet also included apetitionthat says: "As this situation has progressed, our fundamental needs as workers have become more urgent. COVID-19 poses a very real threat to the safety of our workforce and our customers. We cannot wait for politicians, institutions, or our own management to step in to protect us."
Related: COVID-19 Concerns Spark Talks of Strikes Over Pay, Protection NPA: Natural Products Retailers & Their Supply Chain Essential During Pandemic FDA Updates: Nutrition Labeling; Food Supply & Safety FAQsIn the petition, the strike organized called on Amazon to allocate necessary resources, including:
- Guaranteed paid leave for all workers who isolate or self-quarantine instead of coming to work.
- Reinstatement of health care coverage for part-time and seasonal workers.
- Increased FSA funds to cover coronavirus testing and treatment for all team members, including part-time and seasonal.
- Guaranteed hazard pay in the form of double pay during scheduled hours.
- Implementation of policies to facilitate social distancing between workers and customers.
- Commitment to ensuring all locations have adequate sanitation equipment and procedures in place.
- Immediate shutdown of any location where a worker tests positive for COVID-19--and continued full pay for employees until the store can safely reopen.
Whole Foods Market'sCOVID-19 responseis posted on its site, and says: "We believe our role serving customers and the community during this time is a critical one. We care about our team members, customers and products, and we’re evaluating the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation in real-time."