From the current shortage of PPE to the coming hospital bed shortage, we heard what it is like for employees to go to work during this pandemic. Some employers have not implemented or enforced social distancing guidelines or provided proper PPE, while other employers have enacted stronger safety and health measures. We discussed best practices employers can implement, victories won by unions to improve worker protections and what needs to be done to protect workers and their families. There were 100 attendees that participated. We heard from:
- Darren A. Spielma, PhD, Executive Director of The Senator Walter Rand Institute for Public Affairs (WRI) at Rutgers-Camden and an author of Timing County Hospital Bed Shortfall during COVID-19.
- Barbara Rosen, Nurse Educator, and Vice President of the Health Professionals and Allied Employees – AFT about Protecting those Who Care.
- Helen Polizzi Ireland, Director of Community Affairs and Education, United Food and Commercial Workers Local 360 and UFCW Representative Michael O’Brien about the concerns and demands of grocery store workers.
- Dave Hancock, Warehouse Campaign Director, Laundry, Distribution and Food Service Joint Board, Workers United, SEIU and warehouse worker Maria Ortiz about some Best Practices and Ongoing Concerns of Warehouse Workers.
- Lou Kimmel, Executive Director, New Labor, a membership-based organization of mostly low-wage immigrant workers in New Jersey about the issues their members are facing in the face of Covid-19.