Kroger offers employees $100 to get vaccinated against COVID

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FILE- In this June 15, 2017, file photo, bagged purchases from a Kroger grocery store sit in a shopping cart in Flowood, Miss. Kroger Co. will close two supermarkets in Southern California in response to a local ordinance requiring extra pay for certain grocery employees working during the coronavirus pandemic. The decision announced by the company Monday, Feb. 1, 2021, follows a unanimous vote last month by the Long Beach City Council mandating a 120-day increase of $4 an hour for employees of supermarkets with at least 300 employees nationwide and more than 15 in Long Beach. (AP Photo/Rogelio V. Solis, File)

(NEXSTAR) – Kroger announced Friday it is offering a bonus for employees who decide to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Kroger “will provide a one-time payment of $100 to all associates who receive the full manufacturer-recommended doses of the COVID-19 vaccine,” the company said in a news release.

Kroger owns multiple grocery store chains, including Ralph’s, Food 4 Less and Smith’s Food and Drug.

“Since March, we have invested more than $1.5 billion to both reward our associates and to safeguard our associates and customers through the implementation of dozens of safety measures that we continue to execute today,” said Tim Massa, Kroger’s chief people officer.

Kroger will also be giving a $100 store credit and 1,000 fuel points to hourly frontline grocery, supply chain, manufacturing, pharmacy and call center associates.

“As we move into a new phase of the pandemic, we’re increasing our investment to not only recognize our associates’ contributions, but also encourage them to receive the COVID-19 vaccine as it becomes available to them to optimize their well-being as well as the community’s,” Massa said.

The company came under fire earlier this month for announcing the closure of two California stores after the city where they were located imposed a COVID-19 “hero pay” of $4 per hour for some grocery workers.

“After everything they’ve been through and all the sacrifices and the service our members have provided Long Beach during the pandemic, Kroger responds with this chilling message to workers,” Andrea Zinder, president of UFCW Local 324, said in a statement from the union.

Kroger employees nearly 500,000 people across 35 states.

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