How our customers can help.
UFCW continues to support our members and their customers during this difficult time.
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If you have to shop, here’s what you can do to help keep grocery and retail workers safe and help reduce the strain on our health care workers
Wash your hands before and after going to the store
Wipe down your phone, keys and credit cards
You may be washing your hands, but have you ever sanitized your credit or debit card? The CDC suggests that in addition to regular hand-washing, you clean and disinfect anything else that you tend to touch a lot using a regular cleaning spray or wipe. If you are touching your keys, wallet, and phone each time you leave the house, it’s good to be mindful they can carry germs and are among items that should be cleaned.
Avoid touching surfaces with your hands when possible
To the extent possible, avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public places – elevator buttons, door handles, handrails, handshaking with people, etc. Use a tissue or your sleeve to cover your hand or finger if you must touch something.
Stay calm and be civil
Many stores may be out of products that are in high demand. Workers are doing the best they can under less than ideal circumstances. Remember, we’re all in this together.
Stock up, but don’t hoard
The CDC has recommended people stock up to reduce the number of trips needed, but try to be realistic about your needs and do not hoard more than you will use. Your neighbors also need to be able to buy goods for their families.
Avoid peak hours
It is hard to maintain the recommended distance between yourself and others if it is during a rush.
Keep your distance from other shoppers
This is especially important if your store uses Uscan or other mobile self-checkout technology, where grocery workers have reported shoppers are often ignoring recommended guidelines.
Skip the reusable bags
While reusable bags are environmentally friendly, in this case, they also present an unnecessary opportunity to transmit germs. If you have to use reusable bags, wash them between uses and store them in a sanitary environment.
Wipe down your cart or basket before and after use
Remember to clean your car
Studies have found car steering wheels often have more germs than public toilets. It’s easy for germs to follow you back to your vehicle in between when you have a chance to wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.
Shop at a union store
We know we are biased, but the UFCW is hard at work advocating for our members’ interests during this crisis. We want to ensure employees are able to work as safely as possible. We know it is necessary that grocery stores and other retailers stay open so the rest of us can eat and have access to other essentials, and that many hardworking men and women can’t afford to go without a paycheck. Union workers have a way to raise health and safety concerns without having to worry about retaliation if they brought their concerns directly to management. The same may not be true for a non-union store.
Know a UFCW member with a health and safety concern in their workplace? Please tell them report it to us.
Many UFCW workers are experiencing similar challenges in workplaces across the country. Help us keep track of the problems they are facing so we can better work with employers to address them.
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