Macy’s Inc. plans to re-open its stores in a phased manner, with 68 of its stores to function again from next week.
The department store chain will re-open these stores on Monday, May 4 in states such as Georgia, Texas, Oklahoma, Tennessee, and South Carolina, where social distancing restrictions are being eased.
The company aims to re-open all 775 of its stores within the next six to eight weeks, provided coronavirus infection rates continue to fall and stores get permission from the governments to reopen.
In order to enhance the safety of its customers and employees due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Macy’s said it will enforce social distancing as well as reduce contact between customers and its employees at its stores.
The company will perform wellness checks for employees before they report to work and also provide them safety equipment. Prior to a store’s opening, employees will go through additional training on health and safety standards.
Macy’s said that social distancing guidelines, requiring customers and colleagues to remain six feet apart, will be visible throughout its stores. Key reminders will be placed in queue lines, and occupancy guidelines will be enforced.
The company will install sanitizer depots in frequently visited locations throughout the store such as entrances, escalators, elevators, and points of sale. Protective plexiglass will be installed at points of sale within all stores.
Frequently visited locations at the stores, including elevators, escalators, bathrooms, and fitting rooms will be cleaned more regularly.
Macy’s will also suspend spa-like services as well as alteration services and temporarily pause trying on intimate apparel in stores. Customers will be required to use hand sanitizers prior to trying on jewelry or watches. There will also be fewer fitting rooms available for use.
Returned clothing, as well as clothing items that have been tried on and rejected, will be kept off the sales floor for 24 hours.
Macy’s said in March that it will furlough a majority of employees, joining other retailers in the U.S. announcing layoffs as the coronavirus pandemic resulted in the temporary closure of retail stores nationwide.
In February, Macy’s announced its plan to close 125 stores over the next three years and to cut around 2,000 jobs as it struggled to boost its sales amid a weakening retail climate.
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