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Employees protest at Jo-Ann Fabric, ask corporate to consider ‘people over profit’

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COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- This morning, seven employees stood in front of a Jo-Anne Fabric and Craft store in Stetson Hills to protest their working conditions amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The employees held signs saying: "We deserve better" and "Our health over their profit." Two employees, Jessica Defronzo and Ashley Mangin, say they believe Jo-Anne offers a nifty but non-essential service.

"We don’t, you know, provide food or necessities and most of our customer base is an at-risk population," said Mangin. "We're really trying to keep our community safe."

Amanda Hayes, Manager of Corporate Communications at Jo-Ann says, "JOANN is strictly following all CDC and local guidelines for social distancing and occupancy, and have offered Team Members Leave of Absence options, increased sanitization and cleaning materials, and other allowances to help them feel comfortable and safe in the store. The safety and wellbeing of our customers and Team Members is always our highest priority."

According to the company's website, Jo-Ann has reduced their hours and is offering curbside pick-up as a way to protect customers and employees.

If you believe working conditions are unsafe or unhealthful, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration recommends you bring the conditions to your employer's attention, if possible. You can visit their website here.

Colorado Springs / Coronavirus / Health / Local News
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Kerjan Bianca

Kerjan is the weekend morning anchor and reporter for KRDO. Learn more about Kerjan here

Comments

43 Comments

          1. I live in NW Ohio and visited a JoAnns 2 weeks ago. They had NO WIPES for shopping carts. It was an employee female who took her own small bottle of SANITIZER she wore on her pants belt and got a paper towel and gave me some. Cashier said store had NO STOCK of sanitizer,etc. SHAME ON JOANN CORPORATE!!! THEY charge $9-30 a yard for their CLEARANCE FABRICS!!! RIDICULOUS!!! I walked back near the custom photo frames and another but elder female employee was coughing and hacking sitting on a stool with NO MASK OR CLOTH…

  1. Well, if they are so offended by the company’s decision, they have an option.

    Is this the one JoAnn’s in the nation where people are not purchasing materials to make masks? Are they following other guidelines, like limiting how many customers can be inside, wiping down touch surfaces, helping to keep proper distance?
    Maybe these employees would be happier elsewhere.

    1. NavyBrat
      JoAnn’s is giving away all the kits to make the mask for free . All they have to do is walk out to the car and hand them their order they teach sewing classes there why don’t they make themselves some mask . They decide to do this on the same day the stimulus package gets worked out .

      1. I notice that their signs seem to be made quite nicely. Looks like they use Cricuts to make the lettering. Wonder if they bought the machines and all the supplies with their employee discount.

      2. And then they didnt really have the kits at least not in my area advertise these kits then dont have them?? I shop at joannes alot i dont think i will be anytime soon. They aree not an essential store therrefore they sjouldnt be open

    2. There’s had been zero to no actual compliance in the store I am working at, my manager put some tape on the floor and a few gallons of hand sanitizer out. We were told we couldn’t wear masks bc it would scare the customers and we couldn’t actually enforce the 6 foot rule. No registers are wiped down, nothing. We were too short handed to begin with and now every customer wants fabric and they want it now!

  2. I tell you what….I’d fire these lil snowflakes and I make sure they never be able to work again…ungrateful POS

    1. Wow, Im in shock.that you would say that,life is more important than fabric.
      And life and health are of more value tjen making the greedy corporate owners millionlaires at the cost of ones life!

  3. FAKE NEWS KRDO …. not “employees” but SOME employees, your title is constructed to mislead and LIE

    1. Not fake news. Learn English. They ARE employees. It doesn’t say ALL EMPLOYEES. The term “employees” still works perfectly fine. Just because you have a pre-existing hatred of the media (Trump fan) and so you just write any stupid LITTLE thing to act like you have a point, does not make it true. You’re one of those people who misrepresent things and spread harmful misinformation, because you don’t have the common sense God gave a snail without a brain to actually try to understand without putting your hatred into it. Typical

  4. Tell them it’s their choice to come in to work or not, but, Here’s the kicker… they won’t be paid for any scheduled hours not worked. Then remind them there are only so many MISSED HOURS they are allowed to have before being let go…

    1. Exactly!! They want to sit their butt at home but get paid. I am thankful to have my job right now and be able to bring in income. I will work as much as possible because I am not using this as an excuse to be lazy like a lot of other people are.

      1. I’m not using it as an excuse to be lazy. My store is doing nothing to prevent the spread. I have a newborn at home at another person in my house that has autoimmune issues. I could no longer chance being exposed and bringing it home. My family matters to me

  5. They’re not practicing social distancing, so they must not be that worried about the kung fu flu.

  6. First: Wow some of these comments are just right down nasty and uncalled for.

    Second: they spelled JoAnn wrong there is no “e”

    Lastly: I worked for JoAnns for 13 years. Before they were sold to an investment firm they were family owned and they actually cared about their employees. No-one gets any benefits except full time and in my store that was 3 people manager assistant and one full-time key holder. JoAnns offers low pay and a 20% off sometimes 30% off to employees. But they also offer that discount all the time on their app to everyone. I use to buy my own Lysol to spray the carts during cold and flu season. I can’t imagine what they are doing to protect anyone. We couldn’t even buy a broom because we didn’t have budget and I brought a broom in from my house. Point is JoAnns and places like JoAnns, Michaels and Hobby Lobby should all be closed. They aren’t essential. Like was said in the article most of the customer base is in the high risk area above the age of 60. You may be willing to risk your life for a yard of fabric I’m not

  7. In the last 7 days I have bought $90 worth of elastic from Joann’s just for making mask. Personally all fabric stores should be open for this reason, so nice they are helping the most important essential people right now. If you think conditions are bad, think of the conditions on the front lines in hospitals and emergency medical centers.

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