Close Chipotle during COVID-19
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Today we are gathering together and calling out our employer, Chipotle Mexican Grill, to take necessary action to play their part in flattening the curve of COVID-19 and playing their role as an ethical business.
We are calling on Chipotle to be a leader and be bold with their actions. We are calling on Chipotle to close their stores to help slow the spread of COVID-19. We are calling on Chipotle to do the right thing and pay their employees for the work they would potentially miss. We are calling on Chipotle to live up to the values that they preach - cultivating a better world.
As states throughout the country are shutting down and changing their limits as to what businesses are deemed essential and life-sustaining, Chipotle is one that continues to stay open. An overwhelming majority of Chipotle employees are under 30, the prime age of people who can easily become asymptomatic carriers - ones who can easily spread the virus and infect others.
In 2015, Chipotle was associated with a very public series of E. coli outbreaks throughout the country as well as multiple norovirus cases. These events were devastating to the brand and in trust in Chipotle’s ability to maintain high standards of food safety by both employees and customers. Although Chipotle has since recovered, a large majority of the public still remembers the E. coli outbreaks and what the public image of Chipotle was like during that time.
Since moving on, Chipotle has worked hard to make sure they are a quality employer. They’ve provided paid sick time from the beginning of employment, become a pioneer in college tuition reimbursement, and even provided resources for therapy for employees. If Chipotle would like to uphold that image, they need to be the front runners in the food service industry and protect their employees.
As many of our families are getting sent home in the name of employee and public safety, we ask of you to join in millions of other businesses and protect us too. Please put your people before your profits, put the collective well-being of employees and our communities over the chance to serve customers. While Chipotle has followed the protocols set out by the CDC, those protocols are the minimum of what needs to be done. Chipotle needs to stay ahead of COVID-19 and protect workers by sending them home.
As employees, we would like to see one of two options happen:
1. Close all restaurants, but continue to pay employees what their normal wages would be. In regards to our food, have our fresh food be donated to local food banks
2. Keep Chipotle open. Have the orders be online or delivery only - no customers coming through our line. Keep the schedule tight with the number of employees who are physically working in the restaurant to a minimum, but provide them with a hazard pay of double what their normal rate is. All other employees will be off with Chipotle supplementing what their normal paychecks would be.
Both of these options are absolutely feasible. We are calling on Chipotle to take responsibility for the health and safety of their employees and families. We are calling on them to be a leader in our industry by paying their employees while closed down, or paying them an increased rate while we remain open. We are calling on them to stand up and stand behind their vow to cultivate a better world. We have remained loyal throughout the years and know that Chipotle can do the right thing.
A concerned manager. DS
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