For more than three months, we have been working with our members and signatory employers on the Coronavirus/COVID-19 crisis. After several encouraging weeks, we are seeing record numbers of new infections in California and Nevada.
It is not a disease to be taken lightly. Transmission of the mutated virus is frighteningly easy, and there is no evidence that it is any less dangerous or deadly than the original virus.
To prevent the spread of the virus among our members and their families, we urge the following common-sense precautions:
1) Wear a face mask. There is unanimity in the public health profession that wearing a mask helps reduce transmission of the virus. To not wear a mask is to express a disregard for the health of your fellow workers and union members. Wear the mask.
2) Wash your hands and use hand sanitizer – all the time. Simple, but effective.
3) Practice physical distancing of at least six feet whenever possible. Public health professionals emphasize this as a simple, but critically important step to take to fight the virus. When it is not possible, the face mask is even more important.
4) Take your temperature and the temperature of your family members every morning before you go to work. Don’t go to work with an elevated temperature, even if you feel fine.
5) If you feel sick, don’t go to work. Use sick leave. Stay home.
Public health professionals are unanimous in their support of these steps. These are easy things to do, and they can save lives.
The IBEW was founded in 1891 with a goal of making line work safer. Safety continues to be our true north, and when it comes to this virus, there is no room for political debates. Let’s do what the public health professionals tell us to do. Let’s keep ourselves and our families as safe as possible.
–Tom Dalzell, IBEW 1245 Business Manager