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Grocery stores, coffee shops stop payments to the danger of coronavirus



Grocery stores, coffee shops stop payments to the danger of coronavirus

They call it the paying hero.

When coronavirus cases surged and state and local governments issued home stay orders, grocery store workers navigate the cover lines and panicked customers grew worried about exposure to the virus.

Companies are forced to offer financial incentives to important workers in an effort to keep operations going. The main chains, including Target, Walmart, CVS, Whole Food, Costco, Sprouts and Kroger, offer bonuses or temporary increases to employees.

Starbucks closes thousands of stores and offers paid leave to all employees. Those who continue to work through drive-through that remain open receive an increase of $ 3 per hour.

But this increase in wages – “hero bonuses” and “payment of rewards” – has subsided, even with the number of new infections refusing to go down. With the reopening of the Starbucks store, the $ 3 increase will end in late May. So the Target will increase by $ 2 every hour. Wholesale chains owned by Kroger such as Ralphs, QFC and Fred Meyer will stop paying an additional $ 2 per hour on Sunday.

That is an unexpected surprise for employees who feel the circumstances that make them pay extra and not change much.

“The pandemic will not disappear, the coronavirus will not disappear, so why did they take these two dollars from us? This doesn’t make sense, “said Ralphs cashier Dionna Richardson.

The grocery store has an infection. The Ralphs outbreak in Hollywood marks the largest group of cases in a retail store recorded by the Los Angeles County Public Health Department. Of 158 employees, 21 have tested positive for the virus. Tens of grocery store workers across the country have died.

The shop that Richardson is working on in Mid-Wilshire is as busy and the conditions are as risky as it was since the beginning of the crisis, he said. Customers and employees often cannot or will not maintain the recommended six foot space between them.

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Ralphs installed a Plexiglass barrier on the register, but that was a bit of protection. Customers lean on the barrier and poke their heads, Richardson said.

Often, customers do not wear face coverings. When that happened, Richardson took it himself to ask them to wear it. Some pushed back, made aggressive or sharp comments, or refused to leave the store. “Sometimes it’s like a war zone,” he said.

Unions such as UFCW Local 770, which represents more than 20,000 wholesale workers in Los Angeles, Ventura, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, criticized the change.

“The pandemic reveals how small corporations pay many workers, workers who are very dependent on the public,” John Grant, president of UFCW Local 770, said in a statement. “By paying attention to important workers during the pandemic, wholesale companies are quickly using good PR to raise wages, but they cannot justify taking them, especially because they continue to do business while so many other businesses close and profits are record high. “

While lockdowns have caused financial tension for many companies, wholesale and pharmaceutical companies have seen gains in sales because demand for important goods and food has skyrocketed. The CVS Health drugstore chain saw first quarter profit surge 41%, for example.

A Kroger spokesman said in an email that the company “is committed to continuing to support the safety and mental well-being of our partners” and will continue to discuss compensation and benefits with UFCW. The average hourly wage is $ 15, he said.

A spokeswoman for Whole Foods said the company had not announced whether it would extend the $ 2 increase paid by workers. (Owner of Amazon’s Whole Foods the word it will stop the $ 2 per hour bonus for warehouse workers after May 30.) Costco refuses to answer questions about whether he will maintain a higher pay. Nor do sprouts, which pay a small bonus to employees. CVS and Walmart said they would pay a second round of bonuses in June for work time in May, but did not provide information about future commitments for the bonus.

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Large coffee chains with pockets faced unique difficulties at the beginning of the pandemic. Technically, because they serve food, they provide important services and can continue to operate. But employees at Starbucks and Peets balked, signed an online petition and banded together to demand that the shop close and continue to compensate workers.

Peet scolded workers when closing a number of storefronts and provided a $ 3 salary increase for those who continued to work. It is unclear whether this increase will continue to apply. The company did not respond to requests for comment.

Starbucks Executive Vice President, Rossann Williams announced in a letter published online that most stores would reopen on May 4 with modified operations and “best in class” safety measures. While a $ 3 salary increase and paid leave for those who don’t want to work will be removed, the company is extending paid leave for those who navigate the childcare challenge until the end of May.

“We need to restore and run our stores, wherever they are safe and responsible to do so, so that we can keep each partner working and be a light for our community through the next phase of development and recovery,” he wrote.

When Starbucks employees received a notification from Williams on April 16 that the store would restart operations, workers at Starbucks in Burlington, Vt., Resigned.

Scarlett Moore, a barista, said 15 of the 18 workers in her shop signed a letter saying they would not return to work until an order to stay in a Vermont home – which had been extended until May 15 – was revoked. Management did not recognize the letter, he said, but postponed opening the store.

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But Starbucks stores across California have reopened despite local orders staying at home, according to a manager at a store in Alameda County who requested anonymity.

Brianna Rocha, a barista, worked directly for the past two months on a Starbucks drive-through in Highland Park. The store reopened for cellular orders in early May, and work was busier than before the coronavirus broke out, he said.

Starbucks does its part to make people feel normal again, Rocha said, but that can backfire because customers don’t seem to take safety seriously as a result, putting employees at risk.

Three tables are arranged in a semicircle, like a barricade, around the front door where customers can get their drinks. Still, some people try to enter the shop, bang on the door to be let in, and some don’t wear masks. Whether it’s outside waiting or a general mood of anxiety, the mood seems chaotic.

“It’s really a different animal to have a group of customers who are angry, annoyed, and impatient waiting outside the door to scream at you because you don’t get their frappucino fast enough,” he said.

Rocha said revoking salary increases made it feel like “very performative” on the company side.

“Every company that has given a little more in payments tries to throw it like that to the heroes and they thank us. But that doesn’t reflect much anymore, “he said.

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PRR. Banco do Fomento invites companies to offer new financial instruments – Observer



PRR.  Banco do Fomento invites companies to offer new financial instruments – Observer

Banco Português de Fomento started a public consultation this Friday aiming to receive contributions to launch new instruments under the Recovery and Resilience Plan (PRR) which still has 475 million euros.

In a statement, the organization stressed that it intends to invite companies and all stakeholders to participate in public consultations on “future capital and quasi-capital decisions.”

According to PRR, Banco Português de Fomento (BPF) has been cast in “structuring and distribution of capital decisions and quasi-equity capital of a total of €1,425 million under the Capitalization and Business Innovation component of the PRR.

The Belarusian Popular Front still has 475 million euros to launch new programs, the organization’s press release emphasizes.

The public consultation is aimed at soliciting contributions under “the terms of two pre-structured financial instruments designed to encourage company formation and/or capitalization of businesses, primarily in the start-up phases”, “Venture Capital Program” (an instrument that assumes a fund structure of funds)” and “The Deal Co-investment Program (an instrument that takes the form of direct investment in companies, always in co-investment with private investors)”.


“These tool proposals are aimed at facilitating market entry and growth/expansion of viable companies through the development new products/services or markets and strengthening and professionalization of personnel, including the management team,” the BNF press release further emphasizes.

The public consultation is also aimed at obtaining “other proposals for new capital and quasi-capital solutions in accordance with the terms of the aforementioned capitalization funds, which are considered relevant and necessary because they are considered unavailable at the time, or existing conditions that prevent access and use.”

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Ana Carvalho, CEO of BPF, emphasized that these public consultations “are aimed at building an open dialogue with all actors of the business ecosystem, with to improve workflows and identify market failuresand the most appropriate solutions to overcome them.”

“Although we are actively in contact with various associations and institutions, this public comment allows all interested parties to participate, especially potential beneficiaries and partners involved in these measures,” he added, quoted in a press release.

All information and technical descriptions of the two pre-structured products are available on the Banco Português de Fomento website at the link

Suggestions or offers must be submitted online for a thorough assessment by the Belarusian Popular Front until 18:00 on December 19, this body further explained.

The mission of Banco Português de Fomento is to support the economic and social development of Portugal by creating and providing innovative, competitive and appropriate solutions to the needs and challenges of the business ecosystem, enhancing entrepreneurial potential, investment and job creation, and promoting sustainability and economic, social and territorial cohesion of the country.

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FESTin returns to distribute Portuguese-language cinema worldwide | Cinema



FESTin returns to distribute Portuguese-language cinema worldwide |  Cinema

For the 13th edition, FESTin’s mission remains the same: “Bring cinema in Portuguese to the whole world.” So says co-director Adriana Niemeyer by phone with PÚBLICO on the eve of the start of the film festival, which starts this Friday and runs until next week, ending on Wednesday the 14th at LX Factory at 7:00 pm, in Espaço Talante, inside the bookstore Ler Devagar , with a screening of four Brazilian short films chosen by Antonio Grassi, the actor in charge of the space, followed by a toast.

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VARIOUS. Portuguese project that wears a shirt for mental health



VARIOUS.  Portuguese project that wears a shirt for mental health

Little phrases with big meaning sometimes fit into T-shirtright now in bag da Ivory, a project that began in the year of the pandemic and has been interventionally warning about mental health issues ever since.

Francisco Soares Ganzo, the founder, first suffered a panic attack when he was in 10th grade, but ended up not paying much attention to signs that something was wrong. Then the mental health problem reappeared later, at a different stage in life and with different symptoms.

“Four years ago, I started experiencing constant anxiety, to the point that I couldn’t sleep,” says 25-year-old Francisco Versa. “Basically, I put a lot of pressure on myself from the women with whom I had relationships. It was Wednesday masculinity, competition,” he continues.

Early adulthood began with this “almost obsession to be with women” and get the best. performanceto the point where he became very anxious whenever he had sexual relations with a woman.

“The peak was when I couldn’t sleep. My brain was always on and I started taking pills to help me sleep,” says Francisco.

In 2019, he decided to see a therapist rather than a psychologist because he thought it was only “for wimps”, but it wasn’t, and Francisco later figured it out.

Today, he wants to convey the same message, and to do so, he created the Ivory project in 2020, consisting of clothes and accessories with special messages that form a bridge to the necessary incentive for those in need of help.

“When I finally worked up the courage to ask for help, I was like, ‘Wow, I wish I had started sooner. That’s why I started this project. I lacked something that would motivate me to go to therapy earlier. clothes are meant to spread information,” he says.

But Ivory goes far beyond what is written in sweatshirts and accessories.

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Help that comes in order

“Everyone you know is fighting a battle you know nothing about.”

This is one of the messages recorded in t-shirts e sweats from ivory. It’s simple and affects everyone in their own way, but the focus of the Ivory team – also with a past or present marked by mental health issues – is not the phrases on the T-shirts, but what follows them.

“To say that mental health is talked about a lot is a lie. What I mean? When I hear the news that companies are very concerned about mental health or that it has become fashionable with COVID-19, it is all a lie. What people say is vague. Nobody tells stories. A person who is really bad, like I was, does not need to hear that he should go to the gym or eat well. He needs to hear a story like this.” .

Ivory’s next step is to create a space for sharing testimonies through Appendixjust to address this shortcoming. Until then, the project intends to function as anxiety And further to support in the field of mental health.

“For every order we have, a person receives Email mail to make an appointment. Because our goal is to really open doors, to do something that I didn’t have, ”says Francisco. “I feel like a lot of people buy ivory because they’re in bad condition, but they don’t want to take the next step to take care of themselves.”

If encouragement is not enough, an ivory sweater will be cozy and Email mail gives you the push you need to make an appointment with one of Ivory’s psychologists. All it takes is an Instagram post or an email.

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Sweaters and bags 100% organic cotton and mobile phone cases with phrases coined by Francisco Soares Ganzo and designs created by the whole team can be ordered at website.

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