The IAM is calling on top Veterans Affairs officials to ensure that employees and veterans at VA facilities are adequately protected from COVID-19.
IAM International President Robert Martinez Jr. says the agency must provide all workers with personal protective equipment, clean and sanitize workplaces in a timely manner and follow all CDC guidelines.
“When it comes to the critical work our members do every day, serving and protecting our nation, the Veterans Administration must ensure that the men and women who do the work are protected from COVID-19,” wrote Martinez.
The IAM and the National Federation of Federal Employees Federal District 1 (NFFE-IAM) have sounded the alarm over several VA facilities with a lack of PPE and rising COVID-19 cases. Stories have emerged of inadequate basic safety supplies, such as masks, soap and hand sanitizer.
“We will be monitoring the Veterans Administration to ensure that workers are protected and that they are never forced to choose between their job and their health,” wrote Martinez.
The IAM has previously called on the president to use the full power of the Defense Production Act to provide all essential workers with PPE.