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Walmart associates to get bonuses, COVID-19 leave policy extension

Walmart and Sam’s Club associates in DeSoto County and across the country will get a little something extra in their paychecks on Christmas Eve, thanks to the Bentonville, Arkansas-based corporation. They are also being told the special leave policy instituted for COVID-19-related situations will continue through the first part of July.  

The corporation reported in a news release the additional $700 million in cash bonuses to its U.S.-based associates. It brings its total 2020 quarterly and special cash bonuses to more than $2.8 billion. 

The Mississippi share of quarterly bonuses already provided in their Nov. 26 paychecks of $6.1 million will now be added with another estimated $6 million in the Dec. 24 payroll. November’s additional money was due to a strong fourth-quarter business performance by Walmart. The December bonus recognizes associates’ sustained commitment to customers during the pandemic. Full and part-time associates are eligible for both bonuses.

“As we come to a close on this historic year, I’m filled with gratitude for how our associates have led through one of the most trying periods for our company and country,” said John Furner, President and CEO – Walmart U.S. “Our associates have stepped up to serve our customers, communities and each other when it was truly needed most, and we’re pleased to recognize their efforts with a quarterly bonus for strong store performance and a fourth special cash bonus.”

Walmart says there are approximately 1.5 million full- and part-time Walmart and Sam’s Club associates working in the company’s stores, clubs, distribution centers and fulfillment centers that will receive the special cash bonus on Dec. 24.  It will be Walmart’s fourth special cash bonus paid to U.S. associates since the start of the pandemic.

All U.S.-based hourly associates are eligible for the latest special cash bonus. The bonus amounts will be similar to the previous three special cash bonuses Walmart has provided its associates during the pandemic; part-time and temporary hourly associates will receive $150 and full-time hourly associates will receive $300. More than 60 percent of Walmart’s hourly associates are full-time. Drivers, Managers and Assistant Managers will also receive a special cash bonus.

At the same time, Walmart also announced that its COVID-19 Emergency Leave policy will be extended through July 5 of next year. The corporation said it is the first-of-its-kind for part-time and full-time associates, which provides associates with up to two weeks of pay should they need to stay home for COVID-related reasons, including mandatory quarantines, symptoms or illness.  

If they’re not able to return to work after that time, additional pay replacement may be provided for up to 26 weeks. Absences associated with an approved COVID-19 leave will not be counted against associates. 

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