With the coronavirus outbreak continuing to spread in the world, Apple is taking new actions to protect its employees and customers. Cupertino announced last night that it’s closing down all Apple Stores outside Greater China in a move to protect the most vulnerable.
Apple CEO Tim Cook announced that the company is closing all Apple Stores outside of Greater China until March 27. The company’s online stores will continue to be available.
Cook is also recommending employees to work remotely “if their job allows”. The company is also recommending those who need to work on-site to follow guidance and maximize interpersonal space. It’s even carrying out deep cleaning across all sites, with new health screenings and temperature checks in all its offices.
Cook announced that Apple will continue to offer hourly workers their pay normally, even if their working hours are reduced. Apple has apparently donated $15 million worldwide to the global coronavirus response so far. “We’re also announcing that we are matching our employee donations two-to-one to support COVID-19 response efforts locally, nationally and internationally,” said CEO Tim Cook.
Apple initially closed its retail stores in China, but it recently started reopening stores in China with the country now slowly recovering from the outbreak. It’s taking the same actions for stores everywhere else in the world, hoping the situation will get better, and allow the stores to be reopened once again.
Cook also thanked Apple’s team in Greater China for their work. “I want to express my deep gratitude to our team in China for their determination and spirit. As of today, all of our stores in Greater China have reopened. I also want to thank our operations team and partners for their remarkable efforts to restore our supply chain,” said Cook.