I’ve been an REI member since the 80’s and have always thought they were a really socially responsible organization, but this letter I received from the CEO last night seals it:
After a great deal of careful consideration, we are temporarily closing our 162 retail stores nationwide starting tomorrow, March 16, until March 27. I believe that is the right thing for our community. In fact, I believe it is our duty—to do all we can to help keep one another safe in this unprecedented moment.
That also means all employees from these stores will be paid during this temporary closure. And, even with our stores closed, we will be working hard to do everything we can to continue to serve our customers. All orders through REI.com will get free shipping while our stores are closed. Customers who have questions about gear and local outdoor activities that they’d normally ask in our stores can get answers through our digital community, REI Conversations. Co-op Journal will feature articles that help people find ways to get outside even during these challenging times.
Patagonia did the same thing a couple of days ago.
I get it that these are high-end consumer brands, either co-operatively or privately owned, but someone needs to set an example. Good for them. Please share other examples, if you have them, in the comments.