Brittany Caldwell, a VIU student, works as a cashier at the Zellers in Nanaimo North Town Centre. She says that the immediate closing of the store is leaving her worried. “It’s really difficult to find a job right now,” says Caldwell. “I’m worried because I have some bills that I need to pay, [but] I’ve saved up a bit now so I am going to be okay for a while.”
She has been working for Zellers since May and says that she had been looking for a job since Jan. of this year. She said she was aware of the impending closure but took the job because of the difficult job market in Nanaimo. “I really needed a job at this time and I was really excited to finally find one after all those months,” she says.
Caldwell says that the American-based big box store, Target will not be open for six to nine months after the non-union store closes on Nov. 12. “Since Target bought the current location Zellers, it’s their choice what to do with the employees and they’ve decided that if we reapply they’ll give us first priority in the interviews, but besides that, there’s no guarantee that we will be rehired,” says Caldwell. She adds that she plans on reapplying anyways. “I’m going to reapply because I get a first priority interview…but it’s a pretty long time to go without employment.”