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Publix Experiencing Coronavirus Outbreak Amid Employees In This State

Staff members at 30 different Publix locations in Central Florida have recently tested positive for COVID-19.

Staff at restaurants, bars, and grocery stores are all at high risk of catching coronavirus. This is especially the case when customers (and fellow staff members) refuse to wear masks.

New research is showing that the novel coronavirus may in fact be airborne after all, which debunks the former theory that viral particles floating indoors were not infectious. However, it makes sense as to why dining establishments, bars, churches, and meat-processing plants all appear to be breeding grounds for coronavirus. These spaces are oftentimes more cramped and poorly ventilated than other indoor facilities, such as a large grocery store.

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Still, supermarkets aren't immune, especially in states where the percentage of new coronavirus cases is outpacing others. Florida is one such state that's experienced a notable increase in new infections in the past month especially and in Central Florida, 30 Publix locations have had at least one worker test positive for COVID-19.

"Like other essential service providers, we have seen our own associates and their families personally impacted by COVID-19," spokeswoman Maria Brous wrote in an emailed statement to Orlando Sentinel. "Unfortunately, as public health officials have indicated, we expect to see an increase in cases as the virus spreads in our communities."

Those who have tested positive are offered 14 days of paid leave as well as those who were in close contact with the infected staff members. The grocery store chain first began requiring employees to wear masks on April 20 and has since installed plexiglass in front of cash registers to help keep staff members and customers safe. Floor markers also help direct the flow of traffic one way so that shoppers limit interactions with one another as much as possible.

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