Just months after Trader Joe’s increased its special COVID-19 bonus pay for employees, the grocery chain is now looking to slash it by half, SF Gate reports.
In February, Trader Joe’s upped its “thank you” wages, giving employees an additional $4 an hour. The pay bump came months after the initial hazard pay was introduced at the start of the pandemic.
Now, Trader Joe’s is looking to drop the “thank you” pay back down to its initial rate of $2 extra per hour, according to a petition on coworker.org.
“Given the availability of COVID-19 vaccines, we will be returning our ‘thank you’ pay to $2 an hour for all hourly crew members,” company executives told their employees in an April 12 email, according to The Oaklandside.
Emergency Workplace Organizing Committee, who penned the petition, wrote that “after only three months, the company announced that on May 1st they will take away our additional two dollars.
They added, “We fear the rest of the ‘Thank You Pay’ is soon to follow.”
A notice dated May 3 shared to a Trader Joe’s Reddit forum states that the hazard wages will go away entirely on May 17.
It’s not yet clear if the pay was slashed as of the beginning of May. Trader Joe’s could not immediately be reached for comment.
Along with urging the company to keep the $4 extra pay in place, the petition calls on Trader Joe’s to reinstate full healthcare coverage for all current employees, which they claim was nixed in January.
“As essential workers who have risked ourselves and our loved ones for the last year, we should not be left without healthcare,” the statement reads.