By Shereen Siewert

A temporary business closure at SentryWorld in Stevens Point resulting in furloughs for more than 100 workers will now continue through the end of the year and into 2021, according to a notice sent to the state’s Department of Workforce Development.

Sentry Services, LLC, temporarily suspended operations on March 17 as a result of the COVID-19 public health emergency declaration, Mike James, SentryWorld General Manager, said in his August letter to the DWD. At that time, employees were furloughed and paid through April 19.

“At that time, we anticipated that operations would resume within a few months and that the furloughed associates would experience a short-term break in employment of less than six months in duration,” James wrote.

Consistent with that expectation, on May 15 Sentry Services advised furloughed employees that operations would resume July 6. But as new positive cases of COVID-19 continued through May and June, including in Stevens Point, reopening was postponed until Sept. 8.

As the pandemic wore on with new cases, hospitalizations and deaths, James said, the temporary closure of Sentry Services’ entire operations have been extended through at least the first quarter of 2021.

Bartenders, banquet servers, dishwashers, cooks, restaurant servers, field house attendants and other associates are among the 112 impacted by the extended closure, according to the DWD.

Sentry is among 13 businesses to submit mass layoff notices to the DWD in August.