Union calls for more protections as worker deaths climb

The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union is calling on the Trump administration to enforce clear OSHA standards as deaths of meatpacking, food processing, grocery store and health care workers climb. The union says 238 frontline worker members have died from COVID-19 and more than 29,000 have been infected or exposed.

The union says at least 65 meatpacking workers have died from COVID-19 and May was the deadliest month with 38 deaths, while 82 grocery worker deaths have occurred and food processing facilities have had at least 28 worker deaths from the virus.

Mike Perrone, president of the union which represents 1.3 Million members, says workers “can’t survive with the current patchwork of safety measures taken by only a fraction of companies and states.”

The union wants hazard pay reinstated and a $15 an hour wage for all frontline workers; a public mask mandate in all 50 states; and, a national public registry to track COVID-19 infections in frontline workers.

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