The Giant Company joined other major retailers like Fresh Market and Dollar General Tuesday in announcing changes to its hours as well as dedicating the first hour of each business day to senior shoppers.
The company said in a news release that the changes will help meet the needs of its customers and communities during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, which has resulted in a two-week shutdown of non-essential businesses in Pennsylvania that began Tuesday at 12:01 a.m.
After cutting hours last week, Giant said Tuesday it will further reduce them in order to give team members more time to sanitize, unload deliveries, stock shelves and serve customers throughout the day.
Effective this Thursday, March 19, all Giant stores will be open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., until further notice.
Also beginning Thursday, Giant stores will be open from 6 to 7 a.m. daily to service the needs of customers who are 60 and older only.
“According to the CDC, the members of our population who are age 60 and older are most vulnerable to the COVID-19 virus,” the company said. “This will allow customers in this age category to shop in a less crowded environment, which enables social distancing. They’ll also be shopping prior to any other customers entering.”
Giant said its employees won’t request ID for entry, but asked customers to please respect the purpose of the early opening “and do the right thing for your neighbors.”
In another move that mimics what many other large retailers have begun to do, Giant announced that effective immediately, it is placing “a limit of two on key categories throughout the store, including paper goods and disinfectant products.”
Many of those products have been wiped out buy panicked buyers who have emptied store shelves over the past week.
And while many businesses are shut down because of the coronavirus outbreak, Giant said it needs more help.
The company said it is now hiring temporary and part-time team members across its family of brands which includes Giant, Martin’s, Giant Direct, Martin’s Direct and Giant Heirloom Market. Immediate positions as service associates, cashiers, general stock clerks, drivers and fulfillment center selectors are available.
“Those interested, including anyone whose employment may have been affected by the pandemic, can apply online at the Giant or Martin’s websites or speak with any store manager,” the company announced.
Giant continues to offer delivery and pickup through Giant and Martin’s Direct.
“Available slots are limited, and the company is working to expand capacity,” the news release said.
It also announced that there will only be “contactless deliveries for all customers in all areas until further notice,” with contactless delivery meaning “that the driver will practice social distancing during the delivery process.”
“We are grateful for our team members who are working tirelessly around the clock to restock our store shelves and online fulfillment centers and continuing to serve our customers and communities during this unprecedented time,” said Nicholas Bertram, president, The Giant Company.
Locally there are Giant stores at 1880 Leithsville Road, Hellertown, and 216 E. Fairmount St., Coopersburg.