H&M CLOSES ALL RETAIL STORES IN THE US AND CANADA DUE TO COVID-19 OUTBREAK

H&M is the latest retailer to temporarily shutter outposts due to the novel coronavirus outbreak.

The fast-fashion giant announced on Tuesday the closure of all U.S. and Canada stores from March 17 through April 2 due to “the unprecedented and ever-changing nature of the situation.” The company said employees impacted by the shuttering will receive two weeks of continued pay. HM.com will continue to take orders.

“H&M’s top priority is maintaining the health and safety of all its colleagues and customers,” the brand said in a statement. “We have been diligently following the latest recommendations made by local governments and the relevant health authorities and have been agile.”

H&M has more than 5,000 stores in 74 markets. As of 2019, the company operates nearly 600 stores in the United States.

Over the last couple of weeks, H&M says it has implemented staggered work schedules, reduced hours and other safety and cleaning steps to help keep workers and shoppers safe amid the spread of the coronavirus. The company has also extended its return policy.

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