We have recently been informed that one of our members at the Sofina Foods poultry plant in Port Coquitlam has tested positive for the COVID-19 virus.
Since March 12, the union has been working closely on improving safety standards at the plant in light of COVID-19 and Sofina has provided all employees with Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) including a mask and gloves, installed plexiglass barriers on production lines and in breakrooms to prevent transmission, staggered shift times and breaks to enable physical distancing, and created enhanced cleaning measures.
We will continue to monitor the situation at Sofina and are ready to offer support to all of our members at the plant. While our member was able to go into self-isolation quickly, this event reminds us of the importance for all workers to have access to paid sick leave whether they work part-time or full time, so they can prevent the kind of large outbreaks that have been seen at other industrial food plants.
UFCW 1518 is calling on employers and the provincial government to create paid sick leave provisions for all workers, now and beyond the COVID-19 crisis.
The affected employee has been self-isolating since Friday evening.
The employees who came into contact with the affected worker are in self-isolation.
UFCW 1518 is working with management at the plant and with public health authorities to ensure the workers are safe and continue to receive the best protection from the COVID-19 virus. Workers needing additional support can reach out to their union representatives or contact the union at [email protected].