June 1, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has created the risk of COVID-19 exposure in food-selling establishments and pharmacies. Given the need to protect employees and the public from exposure to COVID-19, Harding’s is taking the following steps to reduce the risk of COVID-19 exposure and disease transmission.

  1. Preparedness and Response Plan: This plan will be published at www.hardings.com and will be available at the service counter for employees and customers
  2. Worksite Supervisors: During all hours of operation Harding’s will have a dedicated worksite supervisor to implement, monitor and report on our COVID-19 control strategies
  3. COVID-19 Training: Harding’s will provide training to all employees that covers:
    1. Workplace infection-control practices
    2. The proper use of personal protective equipment
    3. Steps to report symptoms of COVID-19 or a suspected or confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19
    4. How to report unsafe working conditions
    5. Appropriate cleaning procedures
    6. Managing symptomatic customers
  4. Face Coverings: Any individual who enters Harding’s and is able to medically tolerate a face covering must wear a covering over his or her nose and mouth, such as a homemade mask, scarf, bandana, or handkerchief
  1. Dedicated Shopping Hours: Harding’s has designated Wednesday and Thursday from 8am to 10am as shopping time for people over 60, pregnant people, and those with chronic conditions, including heart disease, diabetes, and lung disease
  2. Exposure Reduction: Harding’s has implemented strategies to reduce COVID-19 exposure for our customers and employees , including:
    1. Posting signs at store entrance(s) instructing customers of their legal obligation to wear a face covering when inside the store
    2. Posting signs at store entrance(s) informing customers not to enter if they are or have recently been sick
    3. Installing plexiglass barriers at checkouts and other areas that require interaction
    4. Limiting staffing to the minimum number necessary to operate
    5. Access to handwashing facilities, including those available in public restrooms
    6. Providing non-medical grade face coverings to employees
    7. Requiring face coverings to be worn when employees cannot consistently maintain six feet of separation from other individuals in the store
    8. Allowing employees sufficient break time to wash hands as needed
    9. Using best efforts to ensure checkout employees disinfect their hands between orders to prevent cross-contamination
    10. Using best efforts to provide employees and customers access to an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, as recommended by the CDC
    11. Using best efforts to provide disinfecting wipes at cash register and entrance point for customers to disinfect carts and baskets, as well as at other appropriate locations
    12. Ensuring that both employees and customers remain at least six feet apart to the maximum extent possible, including during employee breaks using:
      • POS to encourage social distancing
      • Marked queues for store entrances and check lanes in 6’ increments
      • Counts during peak hours to ensure occupancy limits are maintained
    13. Closing all self-serve prepared food stations such as salad bars and donut cases
    14. Eliminating free samples and tasting stations
    15. Cleaning according to CDC guidelines including cleaning and disinfecting frequent touchpoints throughout the day such as point of sale terminals at registers, shopping carts, and shopping baskets
    16. Prohibiting employees who are sick from reporting to work and sending employees home if they display symptoms of COVID-19
    17. Accommodating employees who fall within a vulnerable population by providing lower-exposure work assignments or giving them the option to take an unpaid leave of absence with a return date coinciding with the end of the declared states of emergency and disaster, or May 21, 2020, whichever is later
    18. Closing to the public for sufficient time each night to allow stores to be properly sanitized
    19. Encouraging cash transactions to be processed at self-checkout kiosks where possible
    20. Daily screening for all staff prior to reporting to workstations
      • Employees must answer the following questions:
        1. Do you have any of the following symptoms?
          1. Fever of 100.4 degrees or higher
          2. Cough (excluding chronic cough due to a known medical reason other than COVID-19)
  • Shortness of breath
  1. Sore throat
  2. Diarrhea (excluding diarrhea due to a known medical reason other than COVID-19)
  1. Have you had any close contact in the last 14 days with someone with a diagnosis of COVID-19?
  • Any affirmative response to screening question (1)(A) above requires the individual to be excluded:
    1. For at least 72 hours with no fever (three full days of no fever without use of medicine that reduces fever) and other symptoms have improved (for example, when cough and shortness of breath have improved) and at least seven days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
  • An employee who provides an affirmative response to screening question (1)(B) may be allowed to continue work at Harding’s discretion provided they remain asymptomatic and Harding’s implements the following additional precautions:
    1. Measure the employee’s temperature and assess symptoms each day before they start work
    2. As long as the employee does not have a fever or other symptoms, they should continue to self-monitor
    3. If the employee begins to experience symptoms during the day, they should be sent home immediately
    4. The employee should wear a face mask at all times while in the workplace for 14 days after last exposure
    5. The employee should maintain at least six feet of distance from other people as work duties permit
    6. Beyond standard cleaning protocol, clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, and shared electronic equipment routinely known to be impacted by the exposed employee for 14 days after last exposure
  1. COVID-19 Positive Test:
    1. If an employee is identified with a confirmed case of COVID-19:
      • Within 24 hours, notify both the local public health department, and any co-workers, contractors, or suppliers who may have come into contact with the employee
      • Allow employee to return to the workplace only after they are no longer infectious according to the latest guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”)
      • Beyond standard cleaning protocol, clean and disinfect all areas such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, and equipment known to be impacted by the employee
    2. If the Harding’s learns that an individual (including a customer or supplier) with a confirmed case of COVID-19 has visited the store, employees will be notified
  2. DSD Vendors: Vendors moving between food-selling establishments must frequently clean and disinfect frequent touch points