25 signatures reached
To: Mertigae Hospitality Group International
Meritage Hospitality: Keep your staff safe
Protect your staff at store 5009 from COVID-19 by re closing the lobby. Missouri requires no masks and the only way to keep your staff safe is to restrict them to pick up window only. Less than 2 months into the lobby open we have had a crew member contract COVID-19
Why is this important?
When the COVID-19 pandemic started and restaurant dining rooms throughout town began to close for safety, Meritage Hospitality was the very last quick service restaurant (referred to as QSR from this point on) to close their dining room doors to the public. Less than one week after local restrictions were altered to allow for dining rooms to be open again Poplar Bluff Missouri’s location 5009 was reopened for dine in orders; requiring all crew to wear face masks and gloves but applied no restrictions to patrons of the restaurant. Steps have been taken to make the customers feel safe and slash the possibility of crew spreading any germs to them but the staff of the restaurant is put in danger constantly with the only protections in pace for them being a plastic barrier in front of the register which customers often will stand to the side of to better hear the cashier and refuse to maintain a 6 foot distance from the order taker.
Meritage has jumped the gun by allowing people back in their restaurant putting all their employees in danger, blinded by the profit to be had by being among the only restaurants with open dining rooms. As of this petition being written on 8/10/2020 only 2 other QSR establishments have opened their doors to the public again; with no plans to open before December or even this year. Just over 4 weeks into the dining room being open store 5009 has already tested with a positive COVID-19 case. The confirmed cases for the county have been rapidly increasing every day for weeks with over 500 cases between 7/28 and 8/8 alone. Every day that the dining room remains open your employees are at higher and higher risk of becoming infected and passing it to family and friends. The response to the positive test has been the dining room closing for the remainder of the week before reopening on Monday 8/17. By closing the lobby for these few days Meritage is acknowledging the safety increase that restricting the public to the pick up window brings, but also shows how little they care for the well being of their staff by making it last only one week. One week for the employees to be safe. One week for the staff to not have to worry about passing COVID-19 to the ones they love, but Meritage only sees a week of reduced profit. No amount of money is worth strengthening the spread of an infectious disease through a community, especially not a Frosty.
The only responsible response to a clear indication of unsafe working conditions with an open dining room should be to reinstate the restrictions that limit customers to the pick up window to limit direct contact with crew and patrons; the current precautions are nothing short of laughable in the face of a global pandemic.