Walmart on Ambassador Caffery in Lafayette will temporarily close to allow for a deep cleaning and sanitizing of the store.
The store will close at 2 p.m. on Thursday and plans to reopen at 7 a.m. Saturday.
According to Walmart's corporate office, the closure is part of a company-initiated program to allow third party cleaning crews time to thoroughly clean and sanitize the building. Associates will also work to restock shelves and prepare the store to reopen.
Walmart on Ambassador confirmed the closure in a Facebook post, adding that associates must still report to work on their scheduled shifts.
KATC reached out to Walmart to find out if other Lafayette stores would also be closing and if any further information was available on this closure.
Their response is as follows:
"We have a team at the Home Office that evaluates criteria related to stores and the communities we serve. When that data reaches certain thresholds, we make the decision to get ahead of the situation and proactively close the store for cleaning and sanitizing. While we are not able to provide information about those impacted for privacy reasons, know that we are working with any affected associates so they have the time needed to get well. We’re taking all implemented measures seriously and will continue to closely monitor the situation."
The pharmacy will remain open for its regular hours for curbside pickup only. Anyone needing medications will need to call the curbside line at 337-277-5336 or call the pharmacy at 337-989-4095. Any patients needing new medications should have those called in by their doctor's office or electronically sent in.
"We are sorry for this inconvenience, and we hope that everyone stays safe and well," the post reads.
A release from Walmart's corporate office states, "Several areas across the country have begun seeing a renewed increase in positive COVID-19 cases, mainly in regions with low vaccination rates, and we want to assist health officials working against the pandemic."
Walmart's full statement is below:
"As an essential business and a member of the Lafayette, LA community, we understand the role we play in providing our customers with food, medicine and other essential items, especially at this time.
As you know, several areas across the country have begun seeing a renewed increase in positive COVID-19 cases, mainly in regions with low vaccination rates, and we want to assist health officials working against the pandemic. In support of this effort, we have chosen to temporarily close our Lafayette, LA store at 3142 Ambassador Caffery Parkway, today at 2 p.m. as part of a company-initiated program. This will allow extra time for a third-party specialist to further sanitize the store and will also give our associates additional time to restock shelves and prepare the store to once again serve the community. We plan to reopen the store to customers at 6 a.m. on Aug. 14.
Everything we’re doing is for the well-being of our associates and the thousands of customers we serve daily, and in consideration of guidance by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and health experts. Given the rise in positive cases through the Delta variant, we will follow CDC guidance, which includes fully vaccinated people wearing masks in public indoor settings in counties with substantial or high transmission.
In these counties and where there are state or local mask mandates, associates will be required to wear masks inside our facilities, including stores, clubs, distribution centers and fulfillment centers. You can find the county-by-county breakdown here [covid.cdc.gov]. The CDC updates its data on transmission rates weekly, so the guidance on mask usage is likely to change over time in different locations.
When the store reopens on Saturday, we will continue conducting associate health assessments, and all unvaccinated associates must still wear face coverings.
In addition to offering COVID-19 vaccines to customers through walk-in or online appointments, we’re also offering easy access to vaccines for associates. Associates can receive their vaccinations at their home store pharmacy, on or off the clock.
Should associates choose to schedule their vaccinations elsewhere, we will provide two hours of paid leave. Associates who receive the vaccine are given a $150 bonus for doing so and up to three days paid leave, should they experience an adverse reaction to the vaccine.
These protocols and convenient access to vaccinations are in addition to the extensive measures we’ve put in place during the pandemic to help protect our associates and customers. We will continue working closely with elected and local health officials, adjusting how we serve the community while also keeping the health and safety of our customers and associates in mind."
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