Tuesday, November 23, 2021

Ethical Issues in Retail During the Pandemic

COVID-19 has had a worldwide impact on countless fronts, including people’s well-being and personal lives; the economy; social events and interactions; and the retail landscape. Canada is no exception to this.

During the course of the pandemic, the retail landscape has changed significantly. These changes have included:

-Many shoppers migrating to online shopping. Before the pandemic, ecommerce was growing rapidly, but COVID 19 pushed online retail sales up significantly. According to Digital Commerce 360, retail sales grew 32.4% year over year in 2020 and are up 39% in Q1 2021.

-Impacts on supply chains which have driven innovation in fulfillment.

-Gig economy workers becoming essential conduits for many categories of retail.

The pandemic highlighted a number of ethical issues for retail, including:

-The health and safety of front-line retail workers – including mental health concerns

-COVID-19 precautions for customers

-Job security for front-line workers

-The changing role of “gig workers”

-Vaccination policies & other precautions when government policy & public-health guidance has varied

-Wealth-sharing when retailers have done well financially

On Tuesday, November 23rd, The Ethics Centre hosted a webinar discussing the critical, and evolving, issues facing retailers during these unique times.

The event was moderated by Dr. Sareh Pouryousefi, Assistant Professor, Law and Business Department, Ted Rogers School of Management, Ryerson University.

Panelists included:

Dr. Seung Hwan (Mark) Lee, Professor and Director, Retail Management at Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University

Cheri Mara, Executive Leader, Co-Founder + Principal at M+M Business Advisory + Consulting

-Shawn Haggerty, UFCW (United Food and Commercial Workers) Canada Local 175 President

This event was generously supported by the Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University.

To view this webinar, click here.