Dollar General is offering to pay their employees to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
“We want to be on the forefront of facilitating our employees’ ability to receive the COVID-19 vaccine if they so choose—and we encourage all of our team to receive the vaccine when it’s available to them,” Dollar General said in a written statement.
The discount retail chain said they will provide frontline team members a payment equivalent to 4 hours of pay after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine and similar accommodations for salaried staff.
“We do not want our employees to have to choose between receiving a vaccine or coming to work, so we are working to remove barriers,” Dollar General said.
Dollar General has roughly 157,000 employees nationwide. As states work to increase the number of Americans getting vaccinated, some have started allowing frontline workers who are not health care workers to get the vaccine.
They are not alone in offering incentives for getting vaccinated. Houston Methodist, a hospital chain in Texas, says they are offering $500 to employees who get the COVID-19 vaccine.
However, some say paying people to get vaccinated may increase skepticism of those on the fence about getting the vaccine.
“When you're being paid to do something, people assume that there's a reason why and that might happen here. People might assume in this case that the vaccine is riskier than it is and or that the benefits don't go to the person getting the vaccine, but go to others, when of course they go to both in this case,” said Cynthia Cryder, Associate Professor of Marketing at Washington University in St. Louis.
Cryder studies consumer behavior and says there are situations where people could feel better about having an extra incentive to get vaccinated, like in the case of getting a vaccine as a requirement to travel to certain places.
She says in situations like this, the assumptions about why the benefit is in place are more in line with the benefits of the vaccine, like the ability to be around more people.