Public Must Wear Face Masks in Public?
Many Retailers and Grocers Fail at Training Employees
Cristal M Clark
As states begin to lift stay at home orders and ease restrictions many are asking the public to make sure that they wear face masks when in public places such as supermarkets and retail stores. While this has been happening many of my readers have noted some serious offenders over on the other side of that request.
Walk through your local supermarket and take note of what you see employees doing, Target, Walmart is by far the worst. Here in Colorado I went to multiple WalMart locations at the request of some of my readers to view in utter amazement of just how poorly employees are being trained with regards for the proper procedures to wear a face mask and gloves.
I began my journey at the beginning of the week and stopped into a few King Soopers here in town, what I saw were employee’s not wearing the masks correctly, some kept pulling them up and down, touching their faces then touching consumer goods, many did not change gloves after handling cash then moving onto the next customer. What made this even worse is that for the Kings Soopers I visited they offered no clear plastic screen in between the customer and the store clerk during checkout. At one of them I witnessed employees walking out the side door to their car presumably on break to eat, pull the mask down, eat over the mask then pull it back over their mouth and nose and head back into work.
Target was somewhat better, the employee’s seemed to understand the concept of once you are on shift and your mask is on, you need to leave it on. However, in the parking lot for those that were gathering the carts I witnessed the removal of masks in between pulling carts together, touching their faces with gloved hands, then off to move more carts.
The worst locations to visit were WalMart, I actually emailed them and offered to for free hold a training class for the majority of the Colorado locations on how to wear PPE. What I witnessed at each store both sickened me but really made me worry about whether or not WalMart cares for their customers much less their employees. At almost every store, employee after employee would fidget with the face masks, touch their faces, body, one gal was itching her armpit before moving her mask back up then went back to stocking consumer grocery items. At one of the hot food counters I saw an employee pull his mask off, stick his head into the hot food grill to pull out some chick while talking to a customer. Several employees who were stocking had the masks all the way pulled down or halfway down, one store in particular was the absolute worst, I went back just to see if the WalMart Corporate office had spoken to them after my message a couple of days ago. They in fact had not. This morning I saw an elderly man monitoring those that were leaving pull his mask down and cough into the air without properly covering his face as customers walked past. That store allows employees to keep drinks and snacks at the check out where I have watched clerks pull the mask down, take a drink, then fidget to pull the mask back up, not change gloves and go right back to handling consumer goods.
All three stores seemed to lack training in terms of socially distancing. At Walmart this morning when I went back to check, I saw a group of WalMart employees around 6 at the least in a group outside of the exit happily screwing around, some had the mask on, some did not. A customer who was walking in behind me mentioned it loudly as we entered the store as he was in shock. While I understand in some cases due to the nature of shopping, social distancing is not feasible however, wearing the PPE at all times while on shift without touching it, pulling it halfway down, off, and changing gloves is very feasible.
For the most part, I would not suggest in most cases with the exception of WalMart, that employees are taking this as a joke, they seem pretty serious about it, they are just lacking training.
Whole Foods, Sprouts and Safeway get an A+. Employees seem to be properly trained, and are not seen moving the mask on and off while on shift, they clean everything constantly, change gloves when they need to so kudos to them.
The moral here is that if states, cities and municipalities require the general public to wear face masks, I would challenge them to go to the retail shops and grocery stores we shop at and ensure that the employees of those stores are in fact wearing their PPE correctly at all times, ensure that those employees are properly trained and start taking wearing the PPE serious, and who let’s your employee eat and drink food at the checkouts, WalMart needs to knock that shit right off.
Cristal M Clark