A line of customers stands on markers outside the James Bay Thrity Food’s location to help stop the spread of COVID-19. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)

Immunocompromised community call for more options to get groceries during COVID-19

One woman has decided to build a greenhouse to ensure she is able to access food throughout pandemic

While grocery stores adopt to the growing concerns surrounding COVID-19 by reducing hours, hiring more employees and even installing Plexiglas shields at cashiers, members of the immunocompromised community say they are being left out of the planning, especially when it comes to shopping online.

A quick glance at local grocery store websites shows a similar message across the board — ‘We are experiencing extremely high web traffic and demand for online shopping’ — along with asking those who can shop in-store to continue to do so.

Lisa Thompson says she wants to see stores do more to help those who really can’t leave their homes.

Thompson has been trying to order groceries online as she is immunocompromised and just recently got out of the hospital. She was using home support workers several times a day but has since had to ask them to stop coming, leaving her with few options to get food.

READ ALSO: Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

She’s tried a number of local stores and says some won’t even take her order, or if her order goes through there’s no guarantee when the food will be delivered.

“Honestly, I think it’s just been completely overlooked,” she says.

For Christine Knox, who is also immunocompromised, the concern about being able to get groceries during the pandemic started about eight weeks ago as she was monitoring the situation in Wuhan, China, while volunteering for Emergency Management B.C.

READ ALSO: John Horgan extends B.C.’s state of emergency for COVID-19

“I saw the writing on the wall and said OK, we need to get prepared,” says Knox, who began buying things in bulk before the mass of shoppers started lining up for toilet paper and hand sanitizer.

She says that while she’s got enough supports — for now — to have family members or friends drop off groceries, she and her husband are planning for the long haul.

“What we’re doing right now to ensure our food source is going to be OK is we’re building a greenhouse,” she says, adding that she wants to be prepared for up to 18 months in quarantine.

Both Thompson and Knox acknowledge the grocery store staff and their hard work, but still want to see more done to help those who really can’t leave their homes to be able to buy food.

“I don’t know how you control that and improve when people are already working their hardest and doing what they can,” says Knox.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

IN PHOTOS: Grand Forks prepares for high water

Volunteers and emergency crews were busy all around the city, reinforcing vulnerable low points

‘Not technically feasible’: Grand Forks volunteers stack sandbags to fill in damaged dike

Residents hoped governments would do emergency repairs, but learned Sunday that it was up to them

Boundary freshet 2020: At least 189 properties ordered to evacuate as of June 1

Real-time gauges on the West Kettle, Kettle and Granby rivers suggested Monday water near peak

Flood warning issued for Boundary as Kettle River expected to rise to 20-year return level

RDKB: This amounts to a high flood risk for low-lying properties in the region

SD 51 students are allowed to return to school this week – under very different rules

School on June 1 and June 2 was cancelled due to the local state of emergency

If Trudeau won’t stand up to Trump, how will regular people: Singh

Trudeau did not directly answer a question about Trump’s actions amid protests

VIDEO: Internal investigation into aggressive arrest by Kelowna Mountie

A video allegedly shows a Kelowna Mountie striking a man several times

22 new COVID-19 test-positives, one death following days of low case counts in B.C.

Health officials urged British Columbians to ‘stand together while staying apart’

John Horgan says COVID-19 restrictions won’t be eased regionally

B.C. Liberals urge ‘tailored’ response based on infections

Feds get failing grade for lack of action plan on anniversary of MMIWG report

‘Instead of a National Action Plan, we have been left with a Lack-of-Action Plan’

B.C. ranchers, lodge operators say Indigenous land title shuts them out

Tsilhqot’in jurisdiction affects grazing, access to private property

As two B.C. offices see outbreaks, Dr. Henry warns tests don’t replace other measures

Physical distancing, PPE and sanitizing remain key to reduce COVID-19 spread

Greater Victoria drive-thru window smashed after man receives burger without mustard

Greater Victoria Wendy’s staff call police after man allegedly rips Plexiglas barrier off window

Murder charge upgraded in George Floyd case, 3 other cops charged

Floyd’s family and protesters have repeatedly called for criminal charges against all four officers

Most Read