Today, Lowe's Home Improvement (NYSE:LOW) announced its launch of a $100 million package to help counter the effects of the coronavirus outbreak.
Included prominently in the package is a bonus to all employees receiving hourly wages, which will be paid on March 31. The bonus amounts to $150 for part-time workers and $300 for full-time employees. Emergency paid leave for sick or at-risk associates is also being doubled to two weeks (80 hours) for part-timers and four weeks (160 hours) for full-timers.
Lowe's is also taking multiple precautions to help keep both customers and associates safe. Extra cleaning and sanitizing measures are in place to keep surfaces as free from potential contamination as possible. Cashiers have been instructed to clean their checkout area after each customer comes through, and the company is installing Plexiglas sneeze shields to make person-to-person transmission more unlikely during checkout.
The company is increasing curbside pickup support, and deliveries are now contact-free unless installation is required. Joining other companies such as Dollar General (NYSE:DG), Lowe's now has a senior hour for older shoppers on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings.
Approximately $25 million from the package will be used for an employee relief fund and other charitable purposes related to COVID-19. Lowe's is also looking to expand its workforce. The positions include part-time, seasonal, and full-time jobs.
The company is encouraging displaced workers to apply for the work, and considers the hiring push to be part of its contribution to the communities where it operates.