SHERMAN OAKS—According to The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health, several Ralph’s and Food 4 Less stores in Los Angeles and Culver City were issued citations totaling more than $100,000 on Wednesday, September 30, due to multiple health and safety violations.
More than 21 employees from one store located in Hollywood tested positive for the coronavirus back in May, which made one of the workers, Jackie Mayoral, demand safer working conditions for store employees.
Eventually, Mayoral was forced to bring her own gloves to work, and also carried extra gloves on her person just in case she ran out. According to Ralph’s, they had been providing employees with gloves beginning in February, and would later provide masks as well.
Five months later, Mayoral looks back on what she went through, talking about her experience. “What happened at my store was terrifying and put too many people in harm’s way. I contracted COVID-19 at work and it wrecked me. I am still recovering.”
She states, however, that the situation isn’t getting much better. “People are still getting sick and safety measures are still implemented inconsistently. My hope is that Ralph’s will take these citations seriously and do its part to stop the spread of the virus, especially at a time when its profits are record high.”
Reportedly, two more stores in Culver City and Sherman Oaks received citations, where at least one worker from each store contracted the virus and died in a hospital. The illnesses of those workers weren’t even reported, according to Cal/OSHA.
A location in Studio City along with one in Westlake were also cited. The Studio City location failed to install plexiglass to protect customers from employees, while the Westlake location allowed in too many customers, which made it more difficult for people to adequately practice social distancing.