Two more supermarket workers test positive

| 18/05/2020 | 86 Comments

(CNS): Foster’s has become the third supermarket brand on Grand Cayman where staff have tested positive for COVID-19. In a release Monday night, a spokesperson for the Foster’s chain said that the Health Services Authority had confirmed that two workers from the branch in West Bay, Foster’s Republix, were positive for the disease. They are asymptomatic and were tested as part of the general testing of front-line staff.

This brings the total number of supermarket staff who have tested positive to six, all within the last ten days. On Friday 8 May, Kirk Market revealed that three of its staff were positive and they were closing the store the next day to sanitize it. Then, just four days later on 12 May, Cost-U-Less announced that one person working at the store was positive.

It appears that Foster’s, like Cost-U-Less, is sanitizing the affected store overnight and it will be open tomorrow. According to the release, the office of the chief medical officer has said that customers shopping at Foster’s Republix are considered to be at a very low risk of exposure and the products sold at the store do not represent a risk to customers.

A spokesperson said that the store in West Bay completed a risk assessment of the infected staff member’s work areas and is performing disinfection-level cleaning this evening in accordance with suggestions from the Cayman Islands Government and published guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in the US.

The two infected staff members are now in isolation. Contact tracing is being carried out and anyone who worked closely with them in the last seven days is following contact tracing guidelines set out by the CIG,

Foster’s said they implemented a heightened sanitation programme throughout their stores, which included sanitizing high touch-point surfaces, sanitizing cart handles before and after each use, and sanitizing registers every 20 minutes.

They have also installed plexiglass protectors at each register, marked suggested social distance on floors and creating a Security & Sanitation team in each location to enforce sanitation policies and perform assessments throughout the day, to focus on the health and safety of our team, customers and community.

After learning of the positive cases, an outside janitorial service was called in to Foster’s Republix to carry out additional sanitation measures using electrostatic sanitation systems throughout the store.   

In accordance with company policy, the affected employees will be taken care of during the quarantine period and upon their return to work, Foster’s said.

“At Foster’s and Priced Right, the health and well-being of our team, our customers, and the community remains our top priority,” said Julian Foster, Marketing Senior Manager. “We’ve taken every step possible to ensure Foster’s Republix continues to provide a safe and happy shopping and working environment. We are thinking of our team members and their families during this time.”  


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Category: Business, Health, health and safety, Retail

Comments (86)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Simple, morons, mother should have left her child at home!!

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  2. Anonymous says:

    Thank you CNS for being different. It baffles me how most press falls into line. 17 new Covid-9 cases. Scaremongering to attract readers! The emphasis should be on 1) How many hospital beds are empty and 2) Total confirmed cases divided by Total Sample Tested. Today it is (111 / 7,082) x 100 = 1.57%. Each reading this percentage has fallen. And it will fall even more when non-essential workers, who have stayed home, are tested. That is assuming we don’t succumb to other illnesses due to increased stress levels. Those who are afraid and wish to stay home, can. I guarantee 99% of those persons do not have to work to earn a living.

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  3. Anonymous says:

    Anyone hear from ‘Whodatis’? Haven’t seen them on the forums since before the whole virus thing started.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    I saw a mother with a child in Hurley’s on Saturday. I thought that was a no-no?!

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  5. Aisles one way says:

    I would like to see the aisles made one way only, that I think would help with physical distancing inside the stores.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I was at hurleys last saturday. The young workers there are going against one-way traffic in the aisles! And brushing past customers. Arrows are not enough!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Prior to admission, customers should demonstrate they have a defined mission in the form of an organized shopping list. Enforce the one person per household guidance. There shouldn’t be people on their phones, or blocking corridors while staring off into outer space. There shouldn’t be a family five, all given their own individual carts and masks, walking abreast in formation, simply to clog up the store.

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  6. Anonymous says:

    Why haven’t the numbers been published since Fridays press briefing? Dr John promised the numbers would be published on the days press briefings were not held.
    Every country manages to give their numbers over the weekend. Most with medical staff stretched to capacity actually dealing with sick patients. We didn’t even have any Covid patients in the hospital when we last heard from anyone!!

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  7. Anonymous says:

    The silver lining is that everyones budget should be improving if you still have a job.

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    • Anonymous says:

      Our “5 bags” of household groceries now are averaging >$200 a shop for us. I wouldn’t say we are saving more while the grocery cartels see fit to widen their own margins.

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    • Anonymous says:

      TRON. The best post ever on CNS. Come on Anon this is the type of posts you could be doing. Stop being so upset.

  8. Anonymous says:

    Masks should’ve been made mandatory a long time ago. Some of the business places in Cayman Brac have been requiring masks and doing all of the other sanitation methods from before the one positive case. One store even has a washing station outside their store.

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  9. Anonymous says:

    What about the Foster’s in East End where customers have to sanitize their hands and carts themselves…

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  10. Anonymous says:

    @10:19 how long should the restrictions continue? We are far better off than many places and restrictions are being lifted. I can tell if this continues longer the lower class, as there is hardly a middle calls, including small business, will be obliterated and you will be complaining because only a certain class will be able to survive!

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    • Anonymous says:

      Man, get your head screwed on. Cayman has extremely generous business support mechanisms in place. Apply for a loan, get a free business consultation with a big five accounting firm, and maybe qualify for a CIG gift. What an opportunity! Nothing you could say about your “I don’t need any help/please help me” business is worth killing people that don’t need to die.

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  11. Anonymous says:

    Simply put open too early govt inviting infected people now to return in exchange for money WoW! What a surprise went to supermarket too many johhny come latelys not practicing social distancing nor complying with rules First deaths now inevitable ???

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    • Anonymous says:

      Shut up with your incoherent rambling.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I’m getting really tired of spoilt rich people who can afford to stay home while they expect their light to stay on, internet to work, garbage get collected, the port open to bring in food, police to protect them, doctors and nurses to be on hand in case they don’t feel well. Johnny come latelys? Wow. When did they open our airports?

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      • Anonymous says:

        I think it’s the spoilt rich ones that want you to go back to work so they can still stay home and enjoy their 5000 sqft house while you take the risks making$6/hr while they make millions.

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  12. Anonymous says:

    What you are watching here folks is Theater. Specifically the “Alden the Great” Movie.

    The only thing Alden and his band of elitist living in a bubble accomplished is torching this economy to the ground, and putting thousands out of work and damaged the lives of many of others. The level of damage is severe, and we continue to see declines for many months. The worse of this is not upon us yet. The financial disaster is no where near finished. And guess what? After all this decimation….The covid is still will be around.

    We have done nothing except prolonged the inevitable at a catastrophic cost to the nation. You might as well call this Hurricane Alden, because it will cost the nation far worse financially that Ivan did back in 04. MUCH Worse! No one is suggesting that nothing should have been done, rather a more realistic approach. Like protect those at risk, keep them sheltered as much as possible and also give them direct access to high priority healthcare instead of crippling the entire nation and destroying the entire economy with absolutely no plan to recover it. Maintaining pure hysterics was the plan, counting the dead people from around the world on a daily basis instead of looking at the rest of the data.

    This virus doesn’t need cars to get around and you can’t possibly isolate everyone where you alleviate spreading, especially if the virus is say to contaminate almost 3 people for every one.

    This was supposed to be about “flattening the surge” for hospitals and healthcare providers. It did no such thing, the hospitals were empty! What it did was prevent anyone from having access to proper healthcare for 8 weeks. Hardly anyone got sick from Covid, and NO ONE died _of_the_Covid. 9000 Dead they claimed would happen if not for Alden the Great to save us. [Then switched to 900 when they realized the hysterics were just a little too high]

    If you think these masks, [that do absolutely nothing for viral pandemics according to the experts on the subject – see below] and this lock down has in away averted certain death, you are still watching the Alden movie.

    Life or Death Pandemics are not stopped with handkerchiefs around your mouth, rubber gloves and Alphabet grocery shopping. This is a joke!

    — Dr Chris Smith, consultant virologist at Cambridge University

    https://www.rnz.co.nz/audio/player?audio_id=2018731235

    Extremely informative listen before wearing masks became a politically correct initiative, jump to 25:00 mins if you want to hear the part about:

    “Dr Chris Smith, consultant virologist at Cambridge University, told RNZ people should not buy them and instead save their money.”

    “Go and spend it on something useful that you enjoy doing, like having a beer. Those face masks are absolute rubbish and they do nothing.”

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    • Anonymous says:

      That data is an old and there’s numerous virologist who say the exact opposite, too many to list actually which is why I haven’t.
      I think it’s prudent to do so given the new information available now and certainly not harmful to most. And if you’re a selfish bugger who doesn’t want to wear one, go to your doctor and get your exemption, your doctor will be the only one to know that you’re looking for the loophole and can’t tell anyone anyways.

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  13. Anonymous says:

    Is anyone checking into the housing conditions of these workers? That is likely a part of the problem! Crammed communal living does not lend itself to social distancing!

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    • Robert Mugabe IV says:

      We shouldn’t have needed a pandemic to be looking into living conditions. This has been going on forever but previous govts have done nothing about it. Has any permit holders place of residence ever been checked by immigration officers, it’s a long running disgrace how certain nationalities are allowed to live in congested conditions. But the powers that be have to protect their friends businesses with cheap labour, at all ‘costs’. In this case that would be our lives !!

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  14. Anonymous says:

    It was 2 weeks ago when I was on CNS arguing with whether or not we should be told if supermarkets staff were infected. I said they should and now you see why. It’s important we don’t know who but we need to know where if it’s a public space. Not because we want to shame the store… but so we can take extra precaution and get this over with. It’s not going away but at least we can get government out of our everyday lives.

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    • Anonymous says:

      We have to take precautions regardless of knowing where positive cases are. The test only informs us that at that precise moment (X) number of people were asymptomatic carriers of the virus. As the government and medical experts have said, we need to assume that the virus can be everywhere and we have to take measurement in order to protect our-self and preserved our family health .

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    • Anonymous says:

      shame a store? Staff could have gotten it anytime anywhere. Unless staff is tested every day, management has no way of knowing who came to work today after being infected yesterday. Mandatory masks for staff should prevent spreading the virus.

      Why won’t businesses that gather large crowds, including hospitals, invest in Ultraviolet irradiation (UV) therapy for the staff at least? It has been successfully used for nearly 100 years as physical methods of treatment, rehabilitation and prevention.

      But of course it could only be done under supervision of a Physio therapy doctor (don’t confuse with physical) who is trained in application of different forms of energy involved with the various therapeutic modalities: electromagnetic energy, thermal energy, electrical energy, sound energy, and mechanical energy, light energy. Unfortunately American medical schools don’t have such specialization. Some European medical schools offer 2 years specialization programs in physiotherapy (root word “Physics” vs. “Physic”) and balneotherapy.

      CNS: I deleted this link as it was written in Russian.

      Interesting article with even more interesting photos.
      1928-1948: Artificial sun for children https://mashable.com/2015/08/07/sun-therapy-children/

      CNS: Interesting link but it really isn’t a good argument for the therapy described. They experimented on children, some of whom got skin cancer later in life.

      • Anonymous says:

        Crazies are coming out.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah like anyone would take someone who posts ideas that cause cancer- which is far deadlier than covid- seriously.

        • Anonymous says:

          It may be more deadly, but I can’t catch it. That’s the whole premise agains this ridiculous lockdown! If there are 125 people on a ship and only 2 catch the virus over 8 weeks, it means 123 people did NOT catch the virus. We can no longer see the forest for the trees and that will lead to disaster.

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      • Anonymous says:

        CNS, I know you are trying to be fair, but some of the comments on here are clearly trolls.

  15. Anonymous says:

    So basically all the customers will be getting sprayed from head to toe in some mystery disinfectant? I’ll pass on that thanks. Kirk’s here I come.

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  16. Anonymous says:

    and lets hear how many people had it, and didn’t know they had it.

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    • Anonymous says:

      That takes testing.

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    • Anonymous says:

      That’s what asymptomatic means! Every case they report as positive but asymptomatic (ie most including these 2 Fosters employees) is someone who didn’t know they had it.

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      • Anonymous says:

        With all these asymptomatic, and very few hospital admittance, is it possible PE that a weak strain has arrived here?

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    • Anonymous says:

      That’s not important unless they’re infected now. That is useless information. We need to isolate people that has it now. There isn’t any immunity from this thing. I saw an article last night about a US warship that two sailors were re-infected. They used our method of testing. Two negatives before release.

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  17. Anonymous says:

    2 here, 2 there, a few more over there. Don’t be complacent.

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    • Anonymous says:

      You are 100% correct- don’t be complacent. The restrictions should have NEVER been relaxed until 40% of the population had been tested- and if necessary re-tested. No one likes being under such severe impediments to everyday life; however it is better to have these impediments affect us for a short time, than to have death affect us for a lifetime.

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    • Anonymous says:

      20,000 here, 20,000, another 20,000 over there DONT HAVE IT.

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  18. Anonymous says:

    How dare they just re open the next day?
    Telling us a story of how they cleaned overnight..
    Bullshit. .
    Kirk took a saturday and a sunday to clean after positive cases discovered. .
    I know this is a great time for price gouging for all the supermarkets on island (specifically mask prices – it should be a crime!) But our lives matter more then your profit!!!

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  19. Anonymous says:

    Sad, not looking too good

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  20. Robert Mugabe IV says:

    Everyone is sanitizing everything in every store it seems, apart from the most important item that is transported here, there and everywhere unknowingly by many people on the island and sadly it is totally untraceable.
    The CASH, notes and coins. The perfect way to move and it’s unavoidable for many people who don’t use credit cards.
    Let’s face it, that is something that is practically impossible to sanitize.

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  21. Anonymous says:

    It’s inevitable that there will be some positives, but over the last 6 weeks Fosters have been impressive – scrupulous with cart sanitization, managing the distancing in store, and just today saw a sanitization crew wiping down every chiller/freezer door handle after customers open them. Have been very happy to wait a couple of minutes while checkout is sanitized too.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I agree they are great at socially distancing outside the store and sanitizing but inside the stores people are too close together in the isles. I went there 3 weeks ago and vowed not to go back until after this was over. People pushing past me down isles and one women was coughing without covering her mouth. I love fosters as they bring in tasty stuff from Waitrose in the UK but I’m not risking it until things calm down a bit on the transmission side. Although Kirks also had cases of infected staff I still feel their social distancing protocol is better.

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      • Robert Mugabe IV says:

        Well said, I went to Fosters by the airport once. I literally spent less than 30 seconds inside. No social distancing whatsoever. One thing struck me immediately, this is a hot zone ! What’s wrong with people, unable to follow simple instructions. That well known adage rings true!
        You think education is expensive, try ignorance.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Camana bay one isn’t much better despite the size of it! i wonder what Hurley’s is like in comparison?

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          • Anonymous says:

            Haven’t been back to hurleys when I refused the hand sanitizer from a tooth sucking employee, not wearing a mask. I pointed out I had my own, but they still tried stepping in front of me with theirs. I left without shopping.

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        • Anonymous says:

          Never go to the airport one. Especially in a Sat unless it’s for entertainment value 🤪🤪

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      • Anonymous says:

        grocery stores are fine now. IMO, I’m in and out just like the old days.

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      • Anonymous says:

        Agree! Fosters airport scared me to death .. staff standing right next to customers. People pushing past, a couple of customers coughing her lungs out.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I agree. I’m really impressed with Fosters.

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  22. Anonymous says:

    Two more weeks…lol. I don’t care anymore. Too many fear induced folks driving public policy in the face of clear evidence that we are creating a man-made disaster with no rational end game. I have a good job, no money problems, hardly go out anyway. I can go on for years before I am greatly affected. Nothing will change until maximum misery is reached or a viable treatment is discovered, whichever comes first. Utter madness..

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  23. Anonymous says:

    But yet we continue to relax restrictions.😤😤😤😤

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