QFC closing 2 Seattle stores, 109 workers to be laid off

QFC closing 2 Seattle stores, 109 workers to be laid off

The grocery chain QFC recently announced that it is closing two “underperforming” Seattle stores, a decision it says is accelerated by the City Council’s hazard pay mandate.

The two stores, located in the Capitol Hill and Wedgewood neighborhoods, will stay open through April 24 until the process is complete.

The chain says both of those locations operated at a loss, and with the pay mandate, “it becomes impossible to operate a financially sustainable business,” according to a release.

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The stores are located at 416 15th Avenue E and 8400 35th Avenue NE.

“Unfortunately, Seattle City Council didn’t consider that grocery stores – even in a pandemic – operate on razor-thin profit margins in a very competitive landscape,” QFC said in a release.

The Seattle City Council voted in January to approve legislation that provides an extra $4 per hour to grocery store workers during the pandemic. The mandate applies to companies with more than 500 employees and stores larger than 10,000 square feet.

QFC says it already offers competitive wages, healthcare and a pension. The company also says its hourly wage is about $20 per hour.

QFC notified the Washington State Employment Security Department that due to the closure of these two stores, 109 workers will be laid off beginning April 24.