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To: Walmart CEO Doug McMillon and Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen

Tell Walmart and Kroger: We need affordable COVID-19 test kits now!

Tell Walmart and Kroger: We need affordable COVID-19 test kits now!

In September 2021, the Biden administration announced that it made a deal with retailers like Walmart and Kroger to ensure that COVID-19 at-home tests would be sold for no more than the cost of production at $14. But as soon as the deal ended in December, both chains pushed the price of the kits up, in some cases as high as $80.

No family should have to choose between spending money on necessities like food and bills, and spending money on tests that help us stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. I'm calling on Walmart and Kroger to sell COVID-19 tests at cost.

Why is this important?

My family and I contracted COVID-19 around the holidays. A few days after Christmas, my body began to feel as though it was literally shutting down. It began with some minor coughing that led to fatigue, fevers of over 102 F, shortness of breath, and body aches. I couldn't even walk without feeling pain on the soles of my feet. While dealing with the physical impact of getting sick, our family decided to drive to the closest drive-thru testing site every three to four days until we each tested negative, since we could not afford to spend thousands of dollars on private testing. Packing up my family while trying to "quarantine,” driving, and then sitting and standing in some of the longest lines we had seen up to that point was the worst feeling and situation any family could endure. There was a Walmart only minutes away from my home in Broward, Florida. We should have been able to buy affordable at-home COVID-19 tests there, but leaders like Walmart CEO Dough McMillon and Kroger CEO Rodney McMullen decided to take advantage of the high demand for tests by pushing the prices up by over 40%. No family should have to choose between spending money on necessities like food and bills, and spending money on tests that help us stop the spread of COVID-19 in our communities. That’s why I’m calling on Walmart and Kroger to sell their COVID-19 testing kits at cost!

In September 2021, the Biden administration announced that it made a deal with retailers like Walmart and Kroger to ensure that COVID-19 at-home tests would be sold for no more than the cost of production at $14. But as soon as the deal ended in December, both chains pushed the price of the kits up, in some cases as high as $80. When I tried to buy tests from Walmart over the holiday season, each one cost $40. That meant testing all five people in my household using the at-home kits would have cost $200. Spending that much money every time we needed to test would have been a huge financial burden on us. With the cost of living increasing in my city, the prices of COVID-19 test kits were simply too high. Now, as the Omicron variant continues to spread through our communities, these companies continue to charge obscene amounts of money for test kits, in a moment when so many people like me are just trying to make ends meet.

COVID-19 tests should be affordable, if not FREE. Walmart and Kroger are making the decision to push test prices up knowing full well that what they are paying their own workers is not keeping pace with the higher prices of basic necessities. In November, inflation reached a four decade high of 6.8%, while hourly-workers only received an increase of 4.8%. In the meantime, our hospitals are still overwhelmed. Patients are still being forced to delay life-saving treatment and surgeries. And we are still seeing some of the highest rates of deaths due to COVID-19 since the height of the pandemic in 2020. It’s not right. Walmart and Kroger could easily sell COVID-19 test kits at cost and still make some of the highest profits of any company in this country. Instead, they are exploiting our desperation to keep ourselves and our families safe. Tell Walmart and Kroger they must provide affordable COVID-19 test kits, today!

Updates

2022-02-25 13:54:35 -0800

5,000 signatures reached

2022-02-17 12:59:18 -0800

1,000 signatures reached

2022-02-17 10:17:06 -0800

500 signatures reached

2022-02-17 09:41:40 -0800

100 signatures reached

2022-02-17 09:39:49 -0800

50 signatures reached

2022-02-17 09:38:25 -0800

25 signatures reached

2022-02-17 09:37:36 -0800

10 signatures reached