What you need to know
- Apple's retail location in Southlake, Texas has temporarily closed due to COVID-19.
- Twenty-two employees have tested postive for the virus.
- The store will remain closed until next week.
Apple has temporarily closed one of its retail locations due to a COVID-19 outbreak.
As reported by NBC News, the Apple Store in Southlake, Texas has temporarily closed after twenty-two of its employees were exposed to COVID-19. According to the store's website, the company plans to reopen the location on Monday next week.
Now, 22 employees "have shared that they're positive for Covid-19," a store manager told staff during a Webex meeting on Wednesday, according to employees who attended.
"They received a positive diagnosis and will return to work after 10 days of isolation as well as 48 hours of being symptom free," the manager said. All employees will be required to take a rapid antigen test on Sunday before the store's scheduled reopening on Monday, Dec. 13.
One employee said that the store did not follow the company's social distancing policies on Black Friday. Another said they were experiencing symptoms but were encouraged to come into work anyway.
Jeff Miller, who has worked at the Apple store in Southlake for three years, said the store has been getting busier throughout the pandemic. "There were several occasions prior to Black Friday where I expressed concern about the inability to maintain even a semblance of social distancing," he explained. "Then all hell broke loose on Black Friday."
One employee, who asked to remain anonymous because they are not authorized to speak publicly about Apple, said they started experiencing symptoms after working on Black Friday at the Southlake store.
"I was symptomatic throughout the week but I came into work in the store. [The manager] has called me in the past and tried to push that if you're vaccinated you're probably fine, it's probably not Covid," the employee said.
Like every company on earth, Apple has been struggling to return to some semblance of normalcy with all of its operations since the start of the pandemic. The company has continuously opened and closed retail stores as COVID-19 cases rise and fall in areas around the world.