COVID-19 forces Best Buy to shuts down stores
In a company statement, Best Buy CEO Corie Barry says the move to curbside pickup, rather than in-store access, will begin on March 22nd:
"Beginning Sunday, March 22, we will offer contactless curbside service at all locations across the country where state or local laws allow. Rather than ask you to come into our stores, any items you order on BestBuy.com or the Best Buy app will be delivered to your car curbside.
If, for any reason, you didn't order the product in advance and the product is in stock in the store, one of our employees will be more than happy to go get it in the store and sell it to you while you remain in your car."
Barry also says that employees will receive pay though their jobs have been sidelined temporarily. Employee pay will be commensurate to the average number of hours worked weekly over the last 10 weeks.
The new curbside pickup allows buyers to pick up their items outside in vehicles without going in-store. And yet, even with curbside pickup, employees could still be at risk. They'll need to stand some distance away from driver windows and doors to avoid up-close encounters.
Best Buy shutdown in light of coronavirus progression
Best Buy is doing its best to protect employees and the public. This is due to the progression of coronavirus. Currently, there are at least 12,000 infections in the United States. Counties in nearly every state now reporting new infections.
Best Buy's original plan allows for some small store traffic. And yet, with some store traffic, no matter how small, coronavirus is still communicable. Any gathering, small or large, gives coronavirus an opportunity to infect multiple people simultaneously.
Best Buy's store change (shutting down, rather than keeping open) is similar to that of Microsoft, who closed its stores without leaving any open to chance. Microsoft is agreeing to pay its workers for the next two weeks at home. There's no word on when Best Buy will reopen stores. For now, store employees are home for the long haul.
Coronavirus war rages on
The battle against coronavirus rages on. New reports say one of Vice President Mike Pence's staff has the virus. Vice President Pence himself is still free of the disease. US Republic Senator Paul Rand is the disease's newest victim. Senator Rand says he's showing no symptoms at the moment.
While coronavirus originated in an animal market in Wuhan, China, the disease is now in over 16o countries, including South Korea, Italy, Japan, and even the United States. China has the lion's share of infections and deaths among the 200,000+ infections and over 8,000 deaths. Italy is now surpassing China with over 3,000 deaths in its borders alone.
Coronavirus draws its name from the sharp spikes in the virus's anatomy. Under the microscope, the virus spikes look like "coronas," or peaks.