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Walmart confronts sick leave after employee test positive for coronavirus

Walmart is enacting an emergency leave policy for its 1.4 million hourly U.S. workers that allows them to take time off without penalty.

BENTONVILLE, Ark. — In response to the ongoing COVID-19 (coronavirus) outbreak, Walmart is taking preventive measures to ensure employees feel comfortable taking sick leave.

A Walmart associate in Cynthiana, Kentucky, tested positive for COVID-19, an internal memo sent to Walmart employees confirmed.

Walmart said the employee is receiving medical care, and that her condition is improving. 

In announcing that an employee has the virus, Walmart said they have created a COVID-19 emergency leave policy, that's effective immediately. 

The policy states that during this uncertain time if an employee determines they are unable to work or are uncomfortable at work, they can choose to stay home. Walmart will waive their attendance occurrence policy through the end of April.

Walmart is asking employees to still call in, as usual, to let managers know about any absence from work. 

Also, employees working at any store, club, office or distribution center that enters a mandated quarantine, or required to quarantine by a government agency or by Walmart, will receive up to two weeks of pay, and absences during time out will not count against attendance. 

Should an employee have a confirmed case of the virus, they'll receive up to two weeks of pay. If they are not able to return to work after that time, additional pay replacement may be provided for up to 26 weeks for both full-time and part-time associates. 

The new emergency leave policy will impact Walmart's 1.4 million hourly U.S. workers. 

The full memo can be read below:

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