US automakers impose masks in all factories but do not require vaccines By Reuters
© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: The new GM logo is seen on the facade of General Motors headquarters in Detroit, Michigan, United States, March 16, 2021. REUTERS / Rebecca Cook
By David Shepardson
WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Detroit’s Big Three automakers and the United Auto Workers (UAW) said on Tuesday they would reinstate the requirement to wear masks in all US factories, offices and warehouses from Wednesday, but do not require workers to be vaccinated.
The move follows the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) change in COVID-19 guidelines for masks for fully vaccinated people related to the Delta variant, General Motors Co (NYSE :), Ford Motor (NYSE 🙂 Co and Stellantis NV said in a joint statement with the union.
Nissan (OTC 🙂 Motor Co also said on Tuesday it was reinstating its mask requirements for all U.S. employees.
The UAW is not in favor of all workers being vaccinated against COVID-19, and U.S. automakers have not mandated vaccines. The union and the automakers are strongly encouraging workers to get vaccinated.
“We urge all UAW members and their families to get vaccinated. Science is telling us very clearly that the only way to get back to normal is to achieve an increased level of immunity,” the president said on Tuesday. UAW Ray Curry to members in a letter. . “However, we also know that for some there are religious and health reasons for not getting the vaccine.”
The CDC said last week that fully vaccinated people should wear masks indoors in public spaces in places where rates of community transmission of COVID-19 are substantial or high. The CDC said Monday that nearly 80% of U.S. counties are now at those levels.
In June, U.S. automakers and the UAW announced that fully vaccinated workers at their U.S. factories would no longer have to wear masks on the job starting July 12. Many automakers operating in the United States had already started lifting pandemic mask warrants as cases dwindled.
Other businesses as well as federal, state and local governments are putting more pressure on individuals to get vaccinated. New York City said on Tuesday it would require proof of vaccination for people engaged in indoor activities such as eating, working out in a gym or attending a show.
Meat packer Tyson Foods (NYSE 🙂 said it would demand workers get COVID shots, joining companies like Walt Disney (NYSE 🙂 and Walmart (NYSE 🙂 by instituting such a requirement for part of their workforce. US President Joe Biden has ordered workers in federal agencies to get vaccinated or undergo regular testing.
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