A line of customers stands on markers outside the James Bay Thrity Food’s location to help stop the spread of COVID-19. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)

A line of customers stands on markers outside the James Bay Thrity Food’s location to help stop the spread of COVID-19. (Kendra Crighton/News Staff)

Immunocompromised community call for more options to get groceries during COVID-19

One woman has decided to build a greenhouse to ensure she is able to access food throughout pandemic

While grocery stores adopt to the growing concerns surrounding COVID-19 by reducing hours, hiring more employees and even installing Plexiglas shields at cashiers, members of the immunocompromised community say they are being left out of the planning, especially when it comes to shopping online.

A quick glance at local grocery store websites shows a similar message across the board — ‘We are experiencing extremely high web traffic and demand for online shopping’ — along with asking those who can shop in-store to continue to do so.

Lisa Thompson says she wants to see stores do more to help those who really can’t leave their homes.

Thompson has been trying to order groceries online as she is immunocompromised and just recently got out of the hospital. She was using home support workers several times a day but has since had to ask them to stop coming, leaving her with few options to get food.

READ ALSO: Experts weigh in on best handling of groceries during COVID-19 pandemic

She’s tried a number of local stores and says some won’t even take her order, or if her order goes through there’s no guarantee when the food will be delivered.

“Honestly, I think it’s just been completely overlooked,” she says.

For Christine Knox, who is also immunocompromised, the concern about being able to get groceries during the pandemic started about eight weeks ago as she was monitoring the situation in Wuhan, China, while volunteering for Emergency Management B.C.

READ ALSO: John Horgan extends B.C.’s state of emergency for COVID-19

“I saw the writing on the wall and said OK, we need to get prepared,” says Knox, who began buying things in bulk before the mass of shoppers started lining up for toilet paper and hand sanitizer.

She says that while she’s got enough supports — for now — to have family members or friends drop off groceries, she and her husband are planning for the long haul.

“What we’re doing right now to ensure our food source is going to be OK is we’re building a greenhouse,” she says, adding that she wants to be prepared for up to 18 months in quarantine.

Both Thompson and Knox acknowledge the grocery store staff and their hard work, but still want to see more done to help those who really can’t leave their homes to be able to buy food.

“I don’t know how you control that and improve when people are already working their hardest and doing what they can,” says Knox.



kendra.crighton@blackpress.ca

Follow us on Instagram
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Coronavirus

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID cases in the Bella Coola Valley have dropped to just four active cases (file photo)
Active COVID cases drop to four; schools re-open for face-to-face instruction

A total of 63 cases were recorded with 59 now out of isolation

People skate on a lake in a city park in Montreal, Sunday, January 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graham Hughes
The end of hugs: How COVID-19 has changed daily life a year after Canada’s 1st case

Today marks the one year anniversary of COVID-19 landing in Canada

Joyce Cooper (left) said she had to set an example for Tsilhqot’in communities by sharing her COVID-19 positive results. (Photo submitted)
Tsideldel off-reserve member documents experience of COVID-19

We should all be supporting one another and not judging each other, says Joyce Cooper

A health-care worker prepares a dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at a UHN COVID-19 vaccine clinic January 7, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Nathan Denette
Employers might be able to require COVID-19 vaccination from employees: B.C. lawyer

‘An employer must make the case’ using expert science, explains lawyer David Mardiros

Nuxalk Public Health Nurse Sophie Mack is all smiles as she vaccinates her dad, hereditary chief James Mack Sr., with his first dose of the Moderna vaccine (photo submitted)
Cases drop as vaccine continues to roll out in Bella Coola

Seniors at Mountain View Lodge, Nuxalk elders, hospital staff and long-term care residents have all started to receive their vaccines so far

Dr. Penny Ballem, a former deputy health minister, discusses her role in leading B.C.’s COVID-19 vaccination program, at the B.C. legislature, Jan. 22, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C. holds steady with 407 new COVID-19 cases Tuesday

14 deaths, no new outbreaks in the health care system

(Pixabay)
B.C. teacher gets one-day suspension after ‘aggressively’ throwing dumbbell at student

Documents show the weight would have hit the student if they didn’t catch it

This 2020 electron microscope image provided by the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases - Rocky Mountain Laboratories shows SARS-CoV-2 virus particles which cause COVID-19, isolated from a patient in the U.S., emerging from the surface of cells cultured in a lab. THE CANADIAN PRESS/AP, NIAID-RML
B.C. ramping up screening for faster-spreading COVID-19 ‘variants of concern’

B.C. has sequenced about 11,000 COVID-positive samples since last February

A Cessna 170 airplane similar to the one pictured above is reported to be missing off the waters between Victoria and Washington State. Twitter photo/USCG
Canadian, American rescue crews searching for missing aircraft in waters near Victoria

The search is centered around the waters northeast of Port Angeles

Keygan Power with brother Quintin and mom Allison while camping the weekend before Keygan’s brain hemorrhage on Aug. 2, 2020. (Photo Allison Power)
B.C. teen ‘locked inside,’ battling to regain speech after severe brain bleed

16-year-old suffers traumatic loss of function, still plays a mean game of chess

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Jonathon Muzychka and Dean Reber are wanted on Canada-wide warrants. (Courtesy of Victoria Police Department)
Convicted killer, robber at large after failing to return to facility: Victoria police

Dean Reber, 60, and Jonathon Muzychka, 43, may be together

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens during a postelection news conference in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 25, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
30% of B.C. recovery benefit applications held up in manual review

The province says 150 staff have been reassigned to help with manually reviewing applications

Adam Dergazarian, bottom center, pays his respect for Kobe Bryant and his daughter, Gianna, in front of a mural painted by artist Louie Sloe Palsino, Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2021, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong)
Kobe Bryant’s presence remains strong a year after his death

Tuesday marks the grim anniversary of the crash that took their lives

Most Read