The Jackson County Health Department says it is aware of a Costco employee memo dated Thursday that says seven employees at the Independence location have tested positive for COVID-19, and the department says it is looking into the case.


The memo, which circulated on social media later Thursday, says the store has learned of seven employees who have tested positive. It does not list names but does give when and where in the store the employee generally works and their most recent work days. The employees’ most recent days at work range from March 31 to April 7.


“Health Department staff are conducting a full investigation and are providing guidance as needed,” spokesperson Kayla Parker said.


In the memo, signed by store general manager Kyle Shannon, employees are to continue practice social distancing “to the best of your abilities” and use good hygiene. “We share this information in the spirit of transparency; however, we also understand this can cause heightened anxiety,” the memo continues. Employees are then reminded they can use paid sick/personal time, vacation time or unpaid leave if they are concerned about being at work.


The memo does not specify if any other employees are in precautionary quarantine due to the confirmed cases. Shannon says in the memo the store has contacted the Health Department “and are working cooperatively with any additional direction given by them.” The store also is doing “additional cleaning and sanitation protocols and will continue with our daily enhanced cleaning” and has communicated with co-workers known to have been in close contact with COVID-19 patient.


A store employee in administration who answered a call Friday from The Examiner said Shannon was not available and referred any questions to Costco’s corporate office.


Costco has closed early on weekdays to allow for further cleaning and is allowing no more than two people per membership card in its stores as part of its health precautions.