Hobby Lobby closes all stores and employs most employees

Apr 4, 2020 2:50 AM ET

According to a statement released on the company’s website on Friday afternoon, the Hobby Lobby closes all branches across the country and employs most of its employees.
As of Friday, the hobby lobby will “stop paying emergency leave and stop using the company if paid leisure and vacation benefits are granted,” the statement said.
The announcement came after the craft store tacitly reopened stores in several states, despite government locks that required unnecessary stores to be closed.
“Our manager gave us the line” The employees got what the employees wanted; the shops were closed, “an Indiana lobby lobby worker told Business Insider.
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After the Hobby Lobby tacitly reopened stores across the country despite coronavirus freeze orders, it closes all stores in the country and leaves employees on leave.

In a statement released on the company’s website on Friday afternoon, the Hobby Lobby announced that it would “leave nearly all of the business employees” and “stop paying emergency leave and stop using the company, provided paid leisure services and vacation be granted”.

“As the country continues to work to mitigate and mitigate the devastating health and economic effects of the COVID-19 virus, the Hobby Lobby will, after careful consideration, close the rest of its branches and leave almost all of its branch employees and a large proportion of the companies on vacation and sales reps, effective Friday, April 3, at 8:00 p.m., “Hobby Lobby published on its website. “The shops will remain closed until further notice.”

According to two employees who speak anonymously for fear of retaliation, but whose employment status and identity have been confirmed by Business Insider, managers in their branches have invited teams to a meeting to deliver the news on Friday afternoon. During the meetings, they were told that the vacation would affect all senior management employees and would likely run until at least May 1.

An Indiana employee told Business Insider that his manager said she would continue working even though she “has no idea why she will still be there” when the shops are closed.

“The line our manager gave us was: ‘The employees got what the employees wanted; the shops were closed,’” said the Indiana employee in an interview shortly after he found out about the vacation. “My question was: ‘Did God tell them that they close the shops and don’t have to pay us?’”

“Make an effort to keep the employees busy”

The announcement comes after a controversy for Hobby Lobby after the craft chain refused to close its shops and join the nearly 100 large retailers that have temporarily closed to prevent the spread of the corona virus.

While each state has autonomy in defining parameters for what is considered a core business, craft stores are not included in the list of generally recognized key businesses, nor do they appear in a guide to the subject provided by the Department of Homeland Security becomes.

In its Friday announcement, the Hobby Lobby claimed that this was essential and claimed that it had “implemented several best practices to create a safer shopping environment for buyers and consumers.” These methods included “installing physical barriers between customers and cashiers, improved cleaning, and enforcing social distance measures” – tactics employees told Business Insider this week were either not enforced or were insufficient to make them feel to be sure.

“We know that our customers have relied on the fact that we supply key products, including materials for the manufacture of personal protective equipment such as face masks, educational material for the countless parents who now teach their children from home, and thousands of small handicraft businesses that do it themselves relying on us to manufacture their products, “Hobby Lobby wrote in the statement.

In a series of leaked memos received from Business Insider, the Hobby Lobby initially refused to give employees paid sick leave, instead requesting sick workers to use their paid free time and vacation days before making “emergency money” Program. Before vacation, this emergency allowance should be 75% of an employee’s regular earnings based on average hours [worked] in the past six weeks. “

In addition, company executives told managers that they would “make every effort to keep employees” and later gave discussion points for “how to respond and communicate when visited by a local authority that asks why we’re open “a memo from Business Insider.

“We are ready to responsibly reopen our stores when the current situation improves and look forward to welcoming our valued customers back to our stores,” Hobby Lobby wrote in the statement on Friday. “Until then, we pray for those affected by the virus, for the protection of sick health professionals, for the economic security of all affected companies and employees, and for the wisdom of our managers.”

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