Kalamazoo Walmart Forced to Close Due to Critical COVID-19 Surge
Every hour of Christmas shopping is crucial to retail businesses and Walmart will lose a costly two days of business as the Oshtemo store is closed temporarily.
As much as everyone wants COVID to be over, that's simply not the case in Southwest Michigan. On the same day that area public health officials held a news conference pleading for help as the unvaccinated are pushing the resources of the health care system to its limits, retail giant Walmart locked the doors at its Kalamazoo store on 9th Street to sanitize the building and restock the shelves.
You know this costs the store real money. QuerySprout did the math, and with $559 billion in annual revenue, Walmart makes $68,378,995 every hour. The 9th Street store is closed from 2 pm Tuesday to 7 am Thursday, for a total of 41 hours. The Oshtemo Walmart is one of 4,743 in the country, so (this is my math now, so double-check it) that works out to $591,089.77 of lost revenue.
Everything we’re doing is for the well-being of our associates and the thousands of customers we serve daily and in consideration of guidance by the Centers for Disease Control and health experts. Given the rise in positive cases through the delta variant, we will follow CDC guidance, which includes fully vaccinated people wearing masks in public indoor settings in counties with substantial or high transmission.
-Walmart representative Tyler Thomason to NewsChannel 3
The company has a progressive pandemic policy for employees, offering them two hours of paid time off to get vaccinated, or get the shot while punched in. Many businesses have enforced daily health screenings, but few have extended up to two weeks of paid time off (in addition to earned PTO) if an employee contracts COVID-19.
Walmart was one of many big box stores to remain closed on Thanksgiving this year, and now, for those still trying to accomplish Christmas shopping, there is another closure to deal with.