Essential Retailer Is Now Making Unexpected Layoffs in California

Rite Aid, a leading drugstore chain and an essential retailer during the COVID-19 pandemic, is now making unexpected layoffs in California. According to a Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification (WARN) Act letter dated Jan. 23, Rite Aid will lay off 241 employees at a Woodland, California, distribution center.

The Reason for the Layoffs

The reason for the layoffs is that Rite Aid is closing the Woodland distribution center as part of its consolidation plan. The company announced in 2019 that it would consolidate three existing distribution centers in California, Alabama, and Nevada into one new facility in Philadelphia. The move is expected to save Rite Aid $55 million annually in operating costs.

The Impact on the Employees

The layoffs will affect 172 union and 69 non-union employees, including warehouse workers, drivers, supervisors, and managers. The affected employees will receive severance pay, health benefits, and outplacement services, according to the WARN letter. The layoffs will begin on March 27 and will be completed by June 30.

The Outlook for Rite Aid

Rite Aid is one of the largest drugstore chains in the U.S., with over 2,400 stores in 18 states. The company has been struggling with declining sales, heavy debt, and fierce competition from rivals like CVS and Walgreens. The pandemic has also posed challenges for Rite Aid, as it had to cope with increased demand for essential products, safety measures for employees and customers, and vaccine distribution.

However, Rite Aid has also seen some positive signs in its recent performance. The company reported a net income of $4.3 million for the third quarter of fiscal 2021, compared to a net loss of $79.1 million in the same period last year. The company also raised its full-year guidance, expecting revenue to range from $23.9 billion to $24.2 billion, and adjusted EBITDA to range from $490 million to $520 million.

Rite Aid’s CEO, Heyward Donigan, said in a press release that the company is “executing on our strategy and delivering on our key business objectives” and that it is “well-positioned to drive long-term growth and value creation”.


Rite Aid is an essential retailer that is making unexpected layoffs in California as part of its consolidation plan. The layoffs will affect 241 employees at a distribution center in Woodland, who will receive severance and other benefits. Rite Aid is facing financial and competitive challenges, but it is also showing signs of improvement and optimism for the future.

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