May Day: Workers at Target, Walmart, Amazon Plan Sick Out Over Coronavirus Safety


Some Target employees across the country are expected to call in sick today in protest of what they see as less-than-ideal conditions at the retailer during the pandemic.

A statement from Target employees organizing the sick out say the company has put them at needless risk by not requiring workers or guests to wear masks, keeping social distance and other measures. 

Employees at Amazon, Whole Foods, and Walmart have announced similar work actions today.

They're doing it in protest of the conditions they're working under in the coronavirus pandemic, and to mark May 1, traditionally known May Day, a time to demonstrate the rights of workers.

"As workers, we have agency, we have the ability to change things, and we don't have to be passive spectators in our political and social lives," said Adam Ryan, a Target employee in Christiansburg, Virginia, and a liaison with Target Workers Unite, which supports the sick out.

The company said in a statement that concerns are being raised by a "very small minority" of its 340,000-member front-line workforce.

"While we take them seriously, the concerns raised are from a very small minority," Target said in a statement. "The vast majority of our more than 340,000 frontline team members have expressed pride in the role they are playing in helping provide for families across the country during this time of need."

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