BOSTON (WBZ NewsRadio) — Massachusetts is progressing quickly in its Covid-19 vaccine rollout -- but several local grocery store chains say they still plan to keep dedicated shopping hours in place for those most at risk of catching the virus.
Many stores introduced the "senior" shopping hours in the early months of the pandemic, usually for residents over the age of 60 and people with health conditions that compromise their immune systems.
A spokesperson for the United Food and Commercial Workers Union Local 1445 said they are in the process of getting as many grocery employees vaccinated as quickly as possible -- but in the meantime, those shopping accommodations should remain in place.
Stop and Shop and Whole Foods have continued to implement the early hours and Stop and Shop said it currently has no plans to make changes. The senior shopping hours are between 6 a.m. and 7:30 a.m. at Stop and Shop, and between 7 a.m. and 8 a.m. at Whole Foods.
Other places that offer senior hours include Trader Joe's -- from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m., and Target -- also from 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker's administration is continuing to encourage retail stores to offer the exclusive hours.
As of Wednesday, over 2.1 million Massachusetts residents have been fully vaccinated against Covid-19. Essential workers, including those who work in grocery stores, first became eligible to register for the vaccine on March 22, 2021.
WBZ NewsRadio's James Rojas (@JamesRojasWBZ) reports.