We appreciate our essential workers: Cashier is an essential worker

Special to the Lake Okeechobee News
Essential worker Elizabeth Tellier lives and works in Clewiston, as a cashier at the Shamrock Corner Store.

CLEWISTON — While the rest of us are instructed to social distance and stay indoors, many law enforcement officers, dispatchers, medical professionals, plumbers, garbage men, truck drivers, food service workers, grocery clerks, cashiers, cleaners, construction and maintenance workers and more are classified as essential. This means they must work on the front lines uring the pandemic. While some are on a mission to save lives, for others it’s not a choice. Many simply cannot complete their work from home, and/or continue to work not by choice, but because they have bills to pay and families to feed. Whatever the reason, essential employees sacrifice their own safety to provide services for others.

Essential worker Elizabeth Tellier has lived in Clewiston for about a year and a half. She works at the Shamrock Corner Store, as a cashier. It’s a popular stop for gas, deli food and other small convenience items. It may not be glamorous, but fuel and food are important. The current global pandemic drastically changed things for her and her family.
“Things have changed a lot. My first grandchild was born Easter Sunday. Due to COVID, and the fact I work in the public, I couldn’t be there,“ Elizabeth somberly explained.

She has been being as cautious as she can while working, supplying her own mask and hand sanitizer. Along with her concerns about the virus, she faces some other challenges as well. Finding food, cleaning supplies and items for the new baby all have been difficult.

“I work from 3:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. By the time I get off work, stores are empty,” she said. “A typical day is work,then go to town, in hopes to find supplies for my family. My biggest fear is bringing this baby home soon, and not having everything it needs,” Elizabeth said. She has yet to be able to get baby soaps, diapers and wipes — all the baby things that are hard to come by at this time.

She plans to continue working hard, searching for the items her family needs, and hoping everyone stays healthy and safe, “hoping it all passes soon so everyone can live without fear.”

While essential workers may have previously gone somewhat unseen or unnoticed, right now it’s clear that they are the ones who keep everything running.

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