Dollar General’s Updated Response To COVID-19
Throughout the Dollar General organization, we are working to meet the needs of our communities, customers and neighbors, all the while fulfilling our mission of Serving Others. We recently provided an overview of the measures we are taking to protect the health and safety of our employees and customers. Given the rapidly-evolving nature of this pandemic, we would like to update you on these efforts.
Dollar General’s value and convenience proposition continue to play a vital role in thousands of American households as families are relying on us more than ever to help stretch their budgets on essential items. We’ve heard from customers, employees and even government officials who have expressed their gratitude for Dollar General’s service to their communities during these difficult times. These messages reinforce the importance of our taking necessary steps to ensure that our stores can remain open to serve our customers, and our current efforts include:
- Employee Protective Measures: We have made gloves available and are actively working to distribute face masks (both disposable and reusable/fabric) to employees who choose, or are required by local governments, to wear them. Employees may wear their own facial coverings as long as disposable masks are appropriately discarded and fabric masks are laundered after each use. We are providing additional hand sanitizer to stores for employee and customer use.
- Sneeze Guards: We are currently installing sneeze guards across the chain. In the coming weeks, we will install approximately 40,000 sneeze guards at all checkout registers across our 16,300+ stores to enhance safety for employees and customers.
- Enhanced Cleaning and Stocking: Our store teams are working diligently to provide customers with a clean, well-stocked shopping experience through enhanced cleaning protocols and additional re-stocking time. Stores also continue to close one hour earlier each evening.
- Social Distancing: Each of our 16,300+ stores have implemented social distancing measures designed to help both employees and customers remain six feet apart near checkouts.
- Discounts: In addition to a substantial employee discount on private brand items, we are currently offering an in-store discount to medical personnel, first responders and activated National Guardsmen to demonstrate our heartfelt gratitude for these individuals’ tireless service to their communities.
- Senior Store Hours: We were one of the first to announce senior hours, which are designed to allow some of our most vulnerable neighbors the ability to shop during the first hour that our stores are open to avoid busier and more crowded shopping periods. We have encouraged other customers to plan their shopping trips around these hours, and not surprisingly, we have seen a great deal of cooperation and understanding.
- Employee Care: We continue to communicate with our employees on a regular basis to remind them of steps to help contain or avoid the spread of the COVID-19 virus, as well as steps they should take if they experience symptoms or have been in touch with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. We have also established protocols for how employees are to respond to both direct and indirect exposure to the virus in each of our stores and facilities and continue to update those as the situation unfolds. Additionally, any employee that is required to remain at home due to his/her own diagnosis, to care for a family or household member or while awaiting test results will be paid for regularly-scheduled hours during that time.
- Employee Bonuses: We are demonstrating additional gratitude to full and part-time employees in our store, distribution center and private fleet teams with an estimated $35 million investment in employee bonuses. These bonuses are for eligible employees who perform work during a six-week period beginning in mid-March.
- Career Opportunities: As previously announced, between March 23 and April 30, we plan to hire up to 50,000 individuals to support our ongoing efforts to serve our communities while creating potentially new career opportunities to those whose prior employment may have been impacted by COVID. Candidates can learn more about a variety of opportunities across the Dollar General network and apply for available openings here.
- Task Force Monitoring: We continue to actively monitor the impact of COVID-19 across our organization while following guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of State and state and local health authorities. A cross-functional task force is diligently working to guide our practices and responses to promote employee and customer safety.