The TJX Companies Inc., which owns Marshalls on Storey Avenue in Newburyport and HomeGoods at Seabrook Commons, is furloughing many hourly employees at its stores and distribution centers after Saturday while top management will take a pay cut.

The move comes after the Framingham-based TJX announced March 19 the temporary closure of all its stores, distribution centers and offices in the U.S., Canada, Europe and Australia at the end of the business day for two weeks amid the rapidly evolving coronavirus pandemic.

“Following this pay cycle, we have made the very difficult decision to temporarily furlough the majority of our hourly store and distribution center associates in the U.S. and Canada,” CEO and President Ernie Herrman said in a message posted on the TJX website. 

“For eligible, impacted associates, TJX existing benefits, including health care coverage, will continue during the temporary furlough at no cost to these associates,” he added. “We have provided impacted associates with information to help them determine how to apply for unemployment benefits.”

The company is also temporarily reducing the salaries of TJX’s senior executive leadership team, including Herrman and its executive chairman, and compensation for the TJX board of directors.

“We also take very seriously our responsibility to ensure the company’s long-term strength and stability well into the future, which has required making some difficult decisions in the near term,” Herrman said. “We are making every effort to prepare for reopenings, as soon as we believe we can operate safely in the communities we serve.”

As of Feb. 1, TJX had a global workforce of 286,000, mostly in the U.S. Besides Marshalls and HomeGoods, the 34-year-old TJX’s other stores in the U.S. are T.J.Maxx, Sierra and Homesense.

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