Sisters and Brothers -
With the news of the Coronavirus COVID-19 spreading in Washington State, I wanted to make sure you are informed about the virus and let you know about steps we are taking at Teamsters 117 to help you and your family stay safe.
The Center of Disease Control (CDC) is an excellent source of up-to-date, reliable information that breaks down the basics of the virus, how it is spread, and how to protect yourself and your family. You can access this information on the CDC's website here.
To help protect yourself, the CDC is recommending that you:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Close contact is considered within 6ft.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. WASH and/or sanitize your hands after.
The CDC also offers guidelines for your employer to help ensure your safety at work. We have drafted a letter to all Teamster employers that references those guidelines and encourages employers to have an operational health and safety plan in place that addresses the virus and to communicate that plan directly to you and your co-workers.
In addition, the Washington State Employment Security Department has put together a list of benefits available to workers who are impacted by COVID-19 and an FAQ page for workers. If you have questions, please reach out to your Union Representative.
In an effort to ensure the safety of our members, we have also cancelled our annual Shop Steward Seminar and Appreciation Day. Both the DOC Seminar on Friday, March 6 and the main Seminar event at the Washington State Convention Center on Saturday, March 7 have been cancelled.
I know this is a worrisome time for all of us. At times like these, it is important that we remember to care for each other - our families, all of our Union Sisters and Brothers, and the members of our community.
Please stay healthy and safe.
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