Call center concerns arise as two San Antonio locations confirm positive COVID-19 cases

Kohl’s, Wells Fargo confirm positive COVID-19 cases at centers in San Antonio

A coronavirus call center opens on Thursday.
A coronavirus call center opens on Thursday. (pixabay.com)

SAN ANTONIO – Call centers remain operational under the city of San Antonio’s “Stay Home, Work Safe” orders. But that has not stopped many people from sharing their concern about their exempt status amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since March 23, there have been more than 100 calls and complaints of social distancing violations at local call centers, according to the city’s emergency declaration enforcement report.

The report shows no call centers have received citations, but some have received warnings.

While officials have not found any major violations, KSAT has learned at least two call centers with positive cases of COVID-19.

A Kohl’s spokesperson confirmed the company’s operations center at 10000 Rogers Run has confirmed cases of COVID-19. The company did not specify how many employees were infected with the virus.

Kohl’s issued a statement that read in part, “The associates are receiving the appropriate medical attention and we took appropriate steps with the other associates that had close contact.”

The statement added that Kohl’s conducted a deep clean of the areas where the associates work, as well as all common spaces and shared surfaces and the facility is currently open.

The spokesperson told KSAT the center was also taking extra measures to ensure a clean and safe work environment for all associates.

Wells Fargo confirmed to KSAT that two employees who work at the contact center in the 4100 block of Wiseman Boulevard tested positive for COVID-19.

According to a statement, the employees were last in the office on March 25 and April 1, and do not face-to-face contact with customers and they do not work at a branch.

“The employees’ health are being closely monitored by their doctors and public health authorities,” the statement added. “We wish our colleagues a full and speedy recovery and will provide our full support.”

Similar to Kohl’s, Wells Fargo performed a deep cleaning at the location.

The company also asked employees who have been in close proximity with those two employees not to go into the office in accordance with public health guidelines.

The City of San Antonio has addressed call centers multiple times since the orders were put into effect.

The city has stated call centers may operate, but should practice social distancing.

Anyone who feels call centers are not practicing social distancing is asked to report the center to 210-207-7273.

COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the new virus, stands for coronavirus disease 2019. The disease first appeared in late 2019 in Wuhan, China, but spread around the world in early 2020, causing the World Health Organization to declare a pandemic in March.

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About the Author:

RJ Marquez has been at KSAT since 2010. He's covered a variety of stories and events across the San Antonio area, and is the lead reporter for KSAT Explains. He also covers the Spurs for on-air and digital platforms. You can see RJ regularly on KSAT Explains and Good Morning San Antonio. He also writes a weekly Spurs newsletter.