These Companies Are Paying Workers To Get Vaccinated
Rachel Sandler – January 18 2021
TOPLINE Dollar General, Instacart and Trader Joe’s will offer their frontline employees financial incentives to get the Covid-19 vaccine, they announced this week, the first major companies to do so.
Dollar General was the first to announce the initiative Wednesday, promising workers four hours pay after getting vaccinated.
Instacart also said it would provide its independent contractors a $25 stipend to “take time away from Instacart” to get vaccinated.
Trader Joe’s said employees will get two hours pay per dose to get vaccinated, according to USA Today.
Neither Amazon nor Walmart, two of the largest employers in the U.S., immediately responded to a request for comment from Forbes asking if they had similar plans. Though it’s unclear if their workers will have to take time off because Amazon has offered to vaccinate employees on-site in some states, while Walmart is preparing its own pharmacies to dole out the vaccine.
Other gig companies, such as Uber, Lyft and Doordash, did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Forbes about their plans.
“We do not want our employees to have to choose between receiving a vaccine or coming to work, so we are working to remove barriers (e.g., travel time, mileage, child care needs, etc.) by providing frontline hourly team members with a one-time payment equivalent of four (4) hours of regular pay,” Dollar General said in a statement.
Large firms with frontline workers have shied away from issuing vaccine mandates for their employees, though they have lobbied for their workers to be prioritized and will strongly encourage them to get inoculated. Federal guidance has put essential workers next in line behind healthcare workers, nursing home residents, those over 65 and anyone with underlying health conditions.
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According to the Wall Street Journal, other companies are considering stipends or paid time off to encourage workers to get vaccinated, but are waiting on state and local officials to make it more clear when employees will be eligible.