OKLAHOMA CITY — Hobby Lobby announced on Friday the company will temporarily close all stores and furlough nearly all store employees effective Friday.

“As the country continues efforts to manage and mitigate the devastating health and economic impacts of the COVID-19 virus, Hobby Lobby will, after careful consideration, close the remainder of its stores, and furlough nearly all store employees and a large portion of corporate and distribution employees, effective Friday, April 3rd, at 8:00 p.m,” the company said in a statement.

The company said it will maintain medical, dental, life, and long-term disability benefits for furloughed employees through at least May 1. The company will also pay the cost of employee premiums.

 “In order to allow our furloughed employees to take full advantage of the Pandemic Unemployment Compensation and Recovery Rebates provided to eligible employees by the federal government, we are ending emergency leave pay and suspending use of Company provided paid time off benefits (PPTO and Vacation) in accordance with the requirements outlined in the CARES Act (subject to State law requirements,” the company said in the statement.

According to the company, stores “will remain closed until further notice.”

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