- Two Cape Town Shoprite stores have been forced to close their doors after employees tested positive for the coronavirus
- The Pick n Pay in Waterstone Village was also temporarily closed after a staff member tested positive
- This highlights the risks of essential services workers amid the global crisis
Two Shoprite stores in Cape Town have been forced to take action and close after employees tested positive for the coronavirus.
The Bothasig branch closed last week while the Athlone store closed its doors on Sunday and will remain closed until further notice.
A Somerset West Pick n Pay has also been affected after a staff member was confirmed to have contracted the virus. The store was temporarily closed to allow for deep cleaning before operations resumed.
Commenting on the situation, Shoprite explained that the Department of Health would need to greenlight the eventual reopening of both stores:
"The (Athlone) store closed immediately and a professional decontamination company was brought in to sanitise and deep clean the store. The provincial Department of Health will give notice when the store may be reopened."
A screening programme has been put into place to ensure other staff members are tested:
"An employee screening programme supported by the company’s mobile clinic has immediately been put into place. Those who had close contact with the infected person are now self-quarantining for 14 days. We have informed the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) and the Department of Health.”
Other staff members who had come into contact with the infected staff member are now under quarantine for the next two weeks.
Those who return to work are also being closely monitored and sanitation practices will remain in place.
Briefly.co.za reported that Shoprite had shelled out R102 million to provide workers with a bonus ahead of the lockdown.
This issue has shed light on the risks involved for the essential workers who are in contact with citizens during the pandemic.
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