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Connecticut grocery chain giving checkups to customers before they can shop

Coronavirus

WATERTOWN, Conn. (WTNH) — LaBonne’s Markets workers are taking customers’ temperatures before they start shopping.

The owner, Bob LaBonne Jr., said it is all part of flattening the curve.

He said customers are shocked when they learn they have a fever.

“We’ve had two people we’ve asked discretely to leave because they had a fever,” he said. “They were surprised. They were very polite. They didn’t realize they had a fever, and they went away calmly.”

Workers have been taking temperatures in front of the store for three days.

“I think it’s a great idea,” customer Tom Pettinicchi said. “It’s good precaution. It’s safe.”

LaBonne said 99 out of 100 people are happy the store is taking extra precautions during this pandemic.

Taking temperatures is just one way of the many new techniques they have adapted.

“We have a shower curtain on the backside of the carriage, the cash registers and also in the delis, we put a 44 by 8-foot screen to protect the deli people from the customers.”

To help local food banks, the store created the round up program.

One hundred percent of proceeds to go local food banks.

Already, staff said they have be able to contribute about $15,000.

“I know there are people that aren’t happy with this but in the end, we’re all going to get judged on what we did or didn’t do in this virus,” LaBonne said. “I want to be on the side where we could say we did everything we could to protect our people.”

The store is also checking temperatures of food and soda vendors as well as their own workers.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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