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  • Writer's pictureStrategic Resource Group

Flickinger: 'Hero Pay' Should Be Government-Funded

The Los Angeles Times: A mandate should apply to all workers and not be paid by grocery stores but instead through state and federal money, said Burt P. Flickinger III, manager director at Strategic Resource Group, a retail and consumer goods consulting firm.

“There should be a collective effort between Sacramento, the county and ... Washington to include these poor workers who have died, have gotten sick, have had their families tragically impacted, to get hero pay, but the hero pay, ethically and financially, should come out of the COVID-19 relief bill,” said Flickinger, who has previously worked with labor unions that represent grocery store workers.

How much effect could a hazard pay mandate really have if only lasts a few months?

Data show that before the pandemic, California families ate, on average, 10 meals at home, and 11 away from home. In the last year, far more families are eating at home and thus spending significantly more money on their grocery bills, Flickinger said.

But as government restrictions and fear around eating at restaurants declines, people will return to their old eating habits, he said.

Grocery sales “will drop significantly, and with sales dropping significantly, the operating profit per store per property will drop significantly as well,” he said. This could lead some retailers to close underperforming stores to make up for the cost of “hero pay.”



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