POLK COUNTY, Fla. — Grocery stores workers are among those considered on the front lines when it comes to COVID-19. Thousands of employees are still needed to report to work daily to stock the shelves and supply the public.
Now, Publix says it has seen employees at 17 of its Polk County stores test positive for the virus since mid-March. And, two more have tested positive south of Tampa Bay.
Of those stores, two had cases reported more than 14 days ago.
"As an essential service provider, the health and well-being of our customers, associates and communities are our top priority," Publix said in a release, adding it is proud of its associate's dedication during this time." And, we thank our customers for continuing to trust us with providing them with the goods and services they need. Like other essential service providers, we have seen our own associates and their families personally impacted by COVID-19."
Publix did not release any identifying information about the employee's roles or the number of employees who tested positive.
Additionally, the supermarket confirmed one associate had tested positive at a store in Parrish and another in Sarasota.
Since the coronavirus pandemic began Publix has required masks to be worn by employees, implemented one-way aisles, enhanced cleaning in high touch areas and installed Plexiglass shields.
Any associate who tests positive for the virus is asked to quarantine while receiving 14 days paid leave to recover from the illness.
The affected stores include:
#1270: 2515 S Florida Ave, Lakeland, FL 33803-3858
#1410: 6767 US Highway 98 N, Lakeland, FL 33809-6226
#0352: 3636 Harden Blvd, Lakeland, FL 33803-5938
#0356: 4730 S Florida Ave, Lakeland, FL 33813-2181
#0425: 1090 Spirit Lake Rd, Winter Haven, FL 33880-1226
#0448: 6031 Cypress Gardens Blvd, Winter Haven, FL 33884-4115
#0557: 102 Hwy 60 E, Lake Wales, FL 33853
#0671: 2125 E County Road 540a, Lakeland, FL 33813-3794
#0702: 2300 Griffin Rd, Lakeland, FL 33810-6760
#0791: 2040 Shepherd Rd, Mulberry, FL 33860-8699
#1076: 617 US Highway 17 92 W, Haines City, FL 33844-5047
#1103: 606 Havendale Blvd, Auburndale, FL 33823-4687
#1171: 5185 US Highway 98 S, Lakeland, FL 33812
#1204: 884 Cypress Gardens Blvd, Winter Haven, FL 33880-4726
#1399: 255 E Van Fleet Dr, Bartow, FL 33830-3831
#1651: 1617 US Hwy 98 S, Lakeland, FL 33801
#1707: 5375 N Socrum Loop Rd, Lakeland, FL 33809
#1152: 11245 US Highway 301 N, Parrish, FL 34219-8675
#0828: 2875 University Pkwy, Sarasota, FL 34243-4201
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