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Publix to give $125 gift cards to vaccinated employees

COVID-19 vaccines will not be mandated for workers with the Florida-based grocer.

LAKELAND, Fla. — Publix on Friday announced it will give a $125 Publix gift card to each employee who gets fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

The Lakeland-based supermarket chain employs more than 225,000 people across seven states, according to its website. It joins a growing list of companies across the country offering some sort of perk to encourage workers -- not require them -- to get a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine.

Publix says those eligible must currently be employed, submit an internal form and proof of vaccination. It's not required for employees to be vaccinated at a Publix Pharmacy location to get a gift card.

"We care about our associates and customers and believe getting vaccinated can help us take one step closer to getting back to normal," Publix CEO Todd Jones said in a statement. "We’re encouraging our associates to get vaccinated when they become eligible and doses are available."

RELATED: County-by-county COVID-19 vaccine information for Tampa Bay seniors

The company's statement indicates the gift card offer will be in effect for some time considering the current high demand and low supply of coronavirus vaccines. Most frontline grocery workers in Florida might not be eligible to receive a vaccine yet as the state currently is allowing health care workers and people aged 65 and older to get a shot.

Eligibility is expected to expand to more people when more vaccines become available.

RELATED: Kroger to pay $100 to employees getting COVID-19 vaccine

Target announced it would give its workers up to four hours of pay and free Lyft rides up to $15 each way to a vaccination site, according to MarketWatch. Petco said it would offer a one-time payment of $75 to its workers to get vaccinated against COVID-19.  

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