Gamestop to stay open as coronavirus spreads through U.S.

GameStop's corporate offices won't let employees shut down stores to avoid coronavirus infection risks.

Published Thu, Mar 19 2020 4:27 PM CDT   |   Updated Tue, Nov 3 2020 11:44 AM CST

GameStop will stay open amid the worsening coronavirus pandemic because corporate thinks the store is "essential retail," sources tell Kotaku's Jason Schreier.

Gamestop to stay open as coronavirus spreads through U.S. 643 |

As countless businesses close down to curb COVID-19 spread, GameStop will remain open and put employees at further risk. Workers at the games retail chain are forbidden to close stores across the United States. A memo sent out by GameStop's leadership marks the store as "essential retail," putting it alongside critical businesses like grocery stores and gas stations.

"Due to the products we carry that enable and enhance our customers' experience in working from home, we believe GameStop is classified as essential retail and therefore is able to remain open during this time," GameStop said in the memo.

"We have received reports of local authorities visiting stores in an attempt to enforce closure despite our classification. Store Managers are approved to provide the document linked below to law enforcement as needed."

This news comes days after GameStop employees revealed potentially dangerous working conditions at the retailer. Management isn't supplying employees with proper cleaning equipment including hand sanitizer, and employees are encouraged to continue taking in used games, which could be harboring COVID-19 pathogens.

And more and more customers are showing up because GameStop is one of the only places that're still open. This trend will continue because management doesn't want to shut the chain down.

The company just today released Doom Eternal early to help combat COVID-19 risks by cutting down customer count, and has delayed all midnight launches indefinitely.

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Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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