Local union rep responds to mask mandate at GM assembly plant


DETROIT (WANE) — A COVID-19 Joint Task Force made up of members from Ford, GM, Stellantis and the United Auto Workers announced Tuesday that personnel will be required to wear masks at all plants, offices and warehouses regardless of vaccination status starting Wednesday, August 4.

The decision was made following a review of recently changed CDC guidelines and “community COVID-19 trends” in order to ensure worker safety.

The UAW acknowledged that masks can be uncomfortable, however the spread of the Delta variant and its high rate of transmission pose a serious health threat.

The task force is strongly encouraging all members, co-workers and their families to get vaccinated so mask protocols can again be relaxed.

WANE 15 talked with a representative for UAW Local 2209 about the anticipated reaction of workers at Fort Wayne Assembly.

“I hate days like this,” Rich Letourneau told WANE 15. “Obviously the joint parties felt the need to do this. I think maybe it’s a little premature, considering most of our membership already did the vaccinations. And those that haven’t, chose to wear a mask. However, the Delta virus is now the new epidemic, but unless they’ve got confirmed cases here, I think it might be a little premature. I know my people aren’t going to be thrilled about it at all, I guarantee you that.”

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