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Grocery Stores Hold Senior Shopping Hours

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Food in the time of coronavirus means wearing latex gloves to the grocery store, keeping your distance from other shoppers and wiping down your shopping cart before you touch it. These protocols are all about keeping COVID-19 from spreading, especially to people in the most high-risk groups. But people still need to eat. And that typically means people need to go to a store.

Several local grocery stores have started holding "senior shopping hours." They set aside the first hour or two of business — typically from 7 to 8 a.m. — only for shoppers who are at least 60 years old or are immune-compromised.

"We had seen on the news how critical it was for people who were 65 or older to stay home and I thought, 'We've got to help them get food,'" says Michell Guajardo, who owns and operates the Altadena location of Grocery Outlet, which seems like it was the first Los Angeles-area store to announced it would do this. Since then, several grocery chains have followed suit.

Will it help protect seniors? Or lull them into a false sense of security?

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