Coronavirus (COVID-19)Food

Trump May Sign Executive Order Ordering Meat Processing Plants to Open

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On April 28, 2020, President Donald Trump was poised to sign an executive order requiring meat processors to stay open, declaring that they are part of the critical infrastructure. This followed on the heels of full-page newspaper ads on Sunday, April 26, 2020, placed by Tyson Foods warning consumers that the supply chain was about to break because many processing plants had to be shut down because of COVID-19. The executive order will offer protection to companies who could generally be held responsible if they asked their workers to continue working in an unsafe work environment and without the right protective gear.

The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union, who represents many processing plant employees, says that at least 5,000 meatpacking workers and 1,500 food processing workers have been directly affected by the coronavirus. The union also reports that 10 protein processing employees and three food processing employees have died.

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