Retail workers are put in a very risky position right now. The spread of COVID-19 in Canada has made their jobs equally essential and vulnerable. Recently, a Shoppers Drug Mart employee tested positive for the virus at an Ottawa location.

A screenshot of an email from Shoppers Drug Mart was posted on Twitter by user @abo3aliabdullah on March 27. 

"We are writing to inform you that one of the employees at our Shoppers Drug Mart Merivale Mall location has recently tested positive for COVID-19," the email reads.

A spokesperson from Loblaws Public Relations confirmed to Narcity that this was the case.

The email from the company states that it has taken additional steps above its cleaning protocols and social distancing practices.

These include closing the store immediately to perform a deep clean, contacting the local public health authority, and telling any employees who had contact with the sick individual to stay home and self-isolate.

The email also stated, "Out of an abundance of caution, we’re notifying customers who recently transacted at this store."

The company also asked any customers who might have concerns to reach out to the local public health team.

Shoppers Drug Mart is one of the few essential businesses that are staying open during the COVID-19 outbreak. The stores have taken precautions to ensure the safety of their employees and customers.

They have also provided a designated morning hour exclusively to elderly people and those with disabilities.

Companies under the Loblaws umbrella have given their staff a pay raise during the pandemic. Stores also shortened the hours they are open and limited the number of customers allowed in-store to 50 at a time.

Other stores deemed essential, like Walmart and Dollarama, are taking on extra staff to help deal with higher demand during the outbreak. Sobeys is even helping people laid off from places like Cineplex get temporary jobs in their stores.

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