Grocery workers push to close stores to customers amid coronavirus pandemic

An independent group of Target employees have called for a mass sick-out to protest what they call "atrocious" behavior from shoppers not respecting space and occupying out of boredom.
3:41 | 04/21/20

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Transcript for Grocery workers push to close stores to customers amid coronavirus pandemic
with that new push to keep shoppers from going inside grocery stores with thousands of essential workers getting sick with coronavirus. T.J. Holmes is at home and has more on all this. Good morning there, T.J. Reporter: Hey, good morning to you and this is a classic case, robin, of we didn't sign up for this. No one who signed found or I job as a cashier at a retail store or grocery store like the one behind me ever thought they'd have 0 put their lives at risk to do their jobs but here they are making on average $11 an hour in this country still showing up for us in a pandemic but they say now we're not heroes, we feel like hostages. Fed up, fired up, frontline work remembers speaking out about the conditions they're facing in this covid-19 pandemic. Our lives are worth more than just one paycheck and we need to take this seriously. Reporter: Target workers unite. An independent group of target employees is calling for a mass sick-out protesting what they call, quote, atrocious bemayflower by shoppers putting them at risk saying they do not respect our space and are occupying our stores out of boredom and for fun. It's not okay that we have to, you know, have elevated risk of exposure because people want to go out and shop around casually. Reporter: Grocery store workers are also facing Ricks. At least 3,000 are now showing coronavirus symptoms. More than two dozen have died from covid-19. New questions now about how to keep these eventual workers safe. This past weekend probably 60% of the customers in the stores that I was in didn't have masks on. And, in fact, weren't necessarily paying attention to social distancing the six feet. Reporter: Even with customers wearing masks one-way aisle, limited hours and plastic shields the union representing grocery store workers says 85% of its members report customers are not social distancing so now they're asking law enforcement to step in. There needs to be, you know, law enforcement and/or security in the stores that would enforce people to do what they're supposed to do. Reporter: Some stores going so far as to switch to curbside pickup only like takoma park silver spring co-op in Maryland. You show up. We have someone stationed in the parking lot. Give your name and order number. Someone from our warehouse in the back comes and gets it, brings it out. We have a contact pickup with a table we leave it on. Reporter: This whole foods in Manhattan becoming the first in the nation to close its doors to customers and focus entirely on online delivery orders. This as New York governor Andrew Cuomo proposes hazard pay tore those on the front lines saying 41% of them are people of color. Two-thirds are women. All those essential workers who had to get up every morning to put food on the shelves, I would say, hazard pay, give them a 00% bonus and I would do that now. Reporter: Governor Cuomo asking for the federal government to put that in the next stimulus but no indications that that would make it in there just yet. All right. We got to be respectful of these essential workers. It's good that you're back on the job and no longer at home. Tell people why you have the bandanna and not your mask. What happened? Yes, ah, see, okay, only have one mask and Sabine drew a smiley face on it and I didn't think that would be appropriate right now. We've been using these bandannas, taste coverings that are still part of it. We can use these as well so this is what hi to go with. Yep. I know. Sabine just gave you a going away present with a little smiley face. Glad you're doing well.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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