Kroger Ends Paid Covid-19 Leave For Unvaccinated Workers

Traditional grocery store company Kroger Co. (KR) said it would be ending the special paid Covid-19 leave for unvaccinated employees and will be charging some of them $50 a month if they remain unprotected.

Kroger said unvaccinated workers who get Covid-19 can no longer avail the special paid leave that it put in place last year. The paid leave will still be offered to vaccinated workers who get breakthrough cases.

Salaried workers who are unvaccinated and who are in a company health care plan will also be charged a $50 "monthly health insurance surcharge" starting January 1.

Kroger said in a statement, "We created and amended several workplace policies at the onset of the pandemic to support our associates during immense uncertainty. The administration of the vaccine to our associates has been an integral part of our efforts and continues to be a focus."

The company has not said how many of its employees are fully vaccinated, and it would not disclose the number. Kroger has nearly 500,000 employees in all, with brands like Ralphs, King Soopers and Fred Meyer.

Businesses are emerging from the serious repercussions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic, which are still there in the economy. Companies are trying to get their employees vaccinated. Some have asked certain workers to be vaccinated, and others have said the unvaccinated cannot return to the office.

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