UPDATE #6 ON COVID-19 DISCUSSIONS WITH GE LYNN
March 23, 2020
The Company is still not moving closer on any of our reasonable proposals to better protect Local 201 members during the COVID-19 pandemic. The Company reports that the cleaning schedule has apparently increased, but not to the levels we need. The Union maintains our position that increasing paid sick leave by an additional 14 days would allow the plant to remain open while the Company implements safer working conditions. These 14 days will likely not be enough to get us through the whole pandemic, but it is an essential immediate measure the Company must take while its still relatively early in the outbreak. It is dangerously short sighted for the Company to continue to stall and go about business as usual.
The Union has proposed sanitation sweeps between each shift, sanitizing every work station and high touch areas before the start of each shift. The Company’s cleaning efforts have been haphazard and we demand immediate implementation of systematic sanitization between shifts.
Do not put yourself or co-workers in harms way. If there are shortages of gloves, paper towels, soap, disinfectant spray take the EHS Coordinator phone number off the shop floor screen saver and alert them supplies are running low. You have a right to a safe working environment. If you do not feel safe on a job STOP and alert your Union safety rep immediately.
The Company’s position on childcare issues remains to call HR and alert supervisors so issues will be treated on a case by case basis. This is an unacceptable response. All schools and daycare facilities are shut down. We have members paying to hold daycare spots they cannot use, while paying a babysitter to watch their kids at home so they may get to work. We have members that have no choice but to stay home with children right now. The Company position is anti-working family to the core.
We are concerned about the safety of all members. We are particularly concerned for members who have or live with those with underlying health conditions. Please speak to your doctor if you have any question of whether it is safe for you to be in the Plant during the COVID-19 pandemic.
As we are a Department of Defense Contractor, we are scheduled to remain working during the stay at home order that begins at noontime tomorrow March 24th. As such we are asking for the Company to negotiate with the Union in good faith for safe working conditions.
The Company announced earlier today there will be cuts, including layoffs, in GE Aviation. What does that mean for Lynn? It is still unclear. Because most of our work is for the military, our work load is still strong. That is a good thing. We are waiting for detailed information from the Company. No news yet.
Please put your health and safety first. Wash your hands often, and maintain 6 feet of space between co-workers. Utilizing washing machines on approved hardware will help with sanitation. Stand behind the Local 201 bargaining committee and demand increased paid sick leave and safe working conditions. We are getting many calls from Unions, community allies, and elected officials that support our demands and our fight for safety, we are not alone.
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