DENVER — The Denver Mattress warehouse is still open despite an active outbreak listed on Colorado's COVID-19 website. There are six confirmed cases and one more probable case, according to the state.
"I came up positive from COVID-19," said one warehouse worker who asked to keep his identity hidden out of fear of retaliation from his employer.
The state's outbreak data shows the outbreak began June 26, leaving workers in a bind.
"I told my manager that I came up positive and he said, 'OK, you’re going to have take ten days off.' I said, 'OK, is there sick leave or am I eligible for unemployment?' He said, 'There is no sick leave and I’m not eligible for unemployment.' They were not going to take responsibly because they don’t know where I got it," that Denver Mattress employee told Denver7.
However, Gov. Jared Polis took steps in the spring to protect workers who lost wages because of COVID-19.
Then on Tuesday, Polis passed legislation providing paid sick leave for all Colorado workers.
"Nobody who has any symptoms should go into work because it could be a cold. It could also be coronavirus," Governor Polis said on Tuesday.
But that new law doesn't help the Denver Mattress worker who missed time before the bill was signed, telling Denver7 management made their workers feel rushed to get back on the job, even before a negative COVID-19 test.
"A lot of other guys decided to go back once they felt better because that’s what Denver Mattress was telling them," the worker said.
The nonprofit Towards Justice, on behalf of that employee, sent a letter to Denver Mattress' general manager demanding those missed days get paid to that worker.
Furniture Row, which owns Denver Mattress, says they received the letter and are investigating the claim.