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Understaffed, Underpaid, Unappreciated

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Posted on May 22, 2020

Essential worker opening a store.

Throughout the Corona virus pandemic, essential workers across the U.S. held strikes protesting unsafe working conditions and subpar compensation. Such concerns are emerging from nearly every essential industry such as food services, manufacturing, transportation, retail, and healthcare. As the country comes closer to a reopen, labor unions and protesters hope discussions with employers can produce favorable outcomes. Calls for increased pay and tangible safety measures are among the employee demands. Employers, on the other hand, are requesting widespread support in their efforts to cater needs.

What is happening?

Many essential workers, such as those in food service industry, attest that maintaining mitigation measures is nearly impossible. Furthermore, at employer discretion, social distancing methods can be implemented, alongside other pandemic mitigations, freely. Consequently, both employers and employees are reviewing health recommendations and realizing inconsistent practice by nearly every entity; this applies to themselves and their clientele.

Among the hardest hit industries, which saw an uptick in dependence since stay-at-home orders, is shipping. Despite their necessity materializing into increased demand, trailer trucks experienced dramatic freight rate drops from a high of $2.50 a mile to just $0.50 a mile. The industry’s decline has grown in the past decade, and some say these issues faced now could be a terrible blow. “Trucking has been forgotten,” Will Kling told Business Insider last year. “When you go to that store and you pick up that bottle of wine or that ketchup, you don’t think about the process it took to get it where it is.”

Healthcare employees and experts share similar sentiments as COVID-19 research reveals how fast the virus spreads. While studies are ongoing, high estimates report COVID-19 can remain airborne for as long as three hours. In high density locations, this poses a serious threat. Understanding that, a few medical personnel joined in counter-protests of those fighting for stay-at-home orders to be repealed. Protesting with well intentions, health and welfare loom behind their differences.

Doctor crossing his arms

What can you do?

If you work in an essential industry, you may find yourself in a position like Will Kling and wonder how to protect your health and job. It is fair to say that consistency in mitigation practices and standards is an immediate solution. Beyond that, it comes down to the individual to uphold those set by health experts; in instances where employers and establishments carry differing rules, find what is common practice. American Medical Compliance is a leader in Infection Control in healthcare and food service and production industries.  We pride ourselves on our ability to assist thousands of organizations and employees in efforts to meet infection guidelines. Especially now, where a health conscious is everywhere, we have branched our solution beyond healthcare and in Food service and production and Cosmetology.

Click here to view the AMC Training Courses