Publix, Walmart plan thousands of hires to keep up with coronavirus demand
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Man looking at bill in grocery store. Image shot 2007. Exact date unknown.
Drastic distancing measures are leaving workers in other industries without a job.

With many feeling economic anxiety because of the effects of the novel coronavirus, Publix and Walmart say they plan to hire thousands of workers to keep up with in-store demand.

As noted by the Tampa Bay Business Journal, Walmart has said it plans to hire 150,000 workers by May 31 — 9,400 of those hires will be here in Florida.

“We take pride in serving our communities during times of need, and with the unprecedented demand we are experiencing, we’re in need of more associates to help across our operating area,” said Marcy Benton, Walmart’s Vice President of Human Resources.

And Publix plans to hire thousands by the end of March.

“We’re looking for people who have a desire to serve, are passionate about the food industry, are willing to work hard and ready to build a career at Publix.”

That will come as good news to many looking for work after Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Friday that all restaurants that seat more than 10 people were closed to dine-in service.

The Governor also shut down beaches and nonessential businesses in Broward and Palm Beach counties. That includes “movie theaters, concert houses, auditoriums, playhouses, bowling alleys, arcades, gymnasiums [and] fitness studios,” according to a release from DeSantis on the new Executive Order.

Miami-Dade County had already done much of the same on its own.

The lack of available testing has led to a dearth of information regarding who is carrying the virus, forcing the state and federal governments to institute widespread warnings and closures to limit interaction among all individuals as a precaution.

That has prompted drastic measures that put a drag on the economy and will lead to many being laid off, at least in the short term.

But as individuals flood grocery stores — which remain open — for needed supplies, Publix and Walmart say they have the capacity to bring on many more workers.

Ryan Nicol

Ryan Nicol covers news out of South Florida for Florida Politics. Ryan is a native Floridian who attended undergrad at Nova Southeastern University before moving on to law school at Florida State. After graduating with a law degree he moved into the news industry, working in TV News as a writer and producer, along with some freelance writing work. If you'd like to contact him, send an email to [email protected]


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