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Founders furloughs over 150 employees amid COVID-19 pandemic

Founders closed its taprooms on March 13, prior to the statewide mandate which shutdown all bars and restaurants.
Credit: 13 ON YOUR SIDE

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — A Grand Rapids-based brewery will furlough over a hundred employees, who until this point, have been receiving a base pay. 

Founders Brewing Co. confirmed Wednesday that the furloughs will impact 163 retail staff members, the bulk of which work in the taproom and kitchen. Those staff members at both the Detroit and Grand Rapids breweries, most of whom are hourly, had been paid since the closure.

Founders closed its taprooms on March 13, prior to the statewide mandate which shutdown all bars and restaurants. 

The brewery will continue to cover 100% of the furloughed employee's contribution to insurance benefits such as medical, dental and vision. The furloughs begin May 3 and CEO Mike Stevens said in a statement that they will continue until there is more clarity about the future of business. 

“We did not take this decision lightly and hope to bring back our furloughed staff as soon as possible," said Mike Stevens, CEO, Founders Brewing Co.

Employees who remain on-site in areas like production will receive hazard pay, according to the company. 

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