Brothers and Sisters,
I want to start this message by, again, thanking my UAW family for your strength and your support of your communities and families as we all work through this terrible crisis together. I’m very sad to report that we had one more UAW member fall to the virus yesterday, from Ford Michigan Assembly in Wayne, Michigan. I want to extend our sincere sympathies to family and friends.
For the courageous UAW members who are still going to work — I know that you are worried and sometimes unclear as to what will be happening with your workplaces. I want to try to address these concerns.
First and foremost, the UAW is working with companies in all of our sectors to advocate for the health and safety of all members in the workplace. While the media tends to focus on automotive assembly, our International Representatives have been pushing all companies to follow and go above and beyond Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines for workplace protections during this pandemic. We have members in Public Health; Parts Distribution Centers; Agricultural Implement; and Department of Defense Contractors.
We have told companies that the only litmus test in a boardroom that matters is whether you would send your own family, your own sons and daughters, to work and feel they are safe.
That said, depending on the type of work our members do, there are often some federal guidelines defining essential services that require some businesses to operate. In those cases, we push management to either go to a volunteer paid system, or if that is not possible, we push for highly stringent CDC guidelines and protections to be followed to protect all members.
It is our goal that you go home to your families each and every day healthy and safe. And rest assured, we are pushing hard with management to go above and beyond CDC guidelines.
And to all the men and women on the front lines of this pandemic, please know we recognize your sacrifice and your courageous dedication.
Please continue to support one another and adhere to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV. Please watch for updates and submit questions that you may have about your worksite at UAW (https://uaw.org/coronavirus/).
Please know, on behalf of myself and the entire International Executive Board, we are fighting every day for our communities and our UAW family. We are all in this together.
Rory L. Gamble
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