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A special Thank You to youth like Jas

July 20, 2020

As the number of daily COVID-19 cases in Canada continue to trend downward, remaining shuttered businesses across Canada begin to cautiously reopen their doors in accordance with Canada Public Health Agency guidelines.

During the peak of the global pandemic in Canada, some businesses remained open to provide essential goods like groceries, hygiene and household items for individuals and families across the country.

Of those essential-goods business, Walmart Canada hired 10,000 new associates to meet the increased demand to provide these goods and services.

Among many of these new employees were dedicated youth like Jas, who played an integral role of ensuring that customers, along with their fellow employees remained safe when they walked through the doors of one of their more than 400 stores across Canada.

Jas applied for a part-time gardening associate position at Walmart after seeing an opening at the Heartland Town Centre in Mississauga February of this year.

During the onset of the pandemic, Jas’ role quickly evolved into supporting his team to ensure that the stores remained safe for customers and his fellow employees, while carrying out his garden centre associate duties.

Opportunity For All Youth had the chance to interview 17-year-old Jas about his experience as an essential worker during the global pandemic.

Q: What role did you play in keeping customers and employees safe at Walmart?

We encouraged our customers to follow social distancing rules and to use the floor markings and signs posted throughout the store as a guide. We frequently cleaned and sanitized high-touch surfaces, such as shopping carts, baskets and door handles. Employees were also required to wash their hands every 30 minutes. For our grocery orders, we carried out contact-free procedures to decrease the risk of transmission during the delivery process.

Q: What role did Walmart play in keeping you safe?

They enforced a limit of people who could enter the store at one time. They also had hand sanitizer stations and plexiglass at the cash registers.

Before we came in for our shift, our manager administered temperature checks and we were provided disposable masks each day. It gave me the confidence to come to work every day.

Q: What have you learned from being an essential worker during COVID-19?

I’ve learned how important it is to have essential items on our shelves and how important we are for our community. Online grocery orders are also really important for our customers during this pandemic. I’ve also learned the value of helping others during this time. ­­­­

Q: How do you feel knowing that you’re helping your community maintain their lives through Walmart?

I feel great. The company feels great. We’re doing this together, coming together as a team to help Canadians. Customers come by and say thank you for working.

Q: Are there any further comments you would like to share about working at Walmart?

I feel thankful for Walmart and the essential workers. I recommend people to work at Walmart because they make you feel appreciated. They always thank you for working hard.

 

Opportunity For All Youth is proud to have Walmart as a member of our coalition of employers that are dedicated to hiring and training youth like Jas, while ensuring they have ongoing opportunities to grow their careers.

 

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