GM, Ford, FCA and UAW join forces to enhance Covid-19 protection in the US

by Autocar Pro News Desk , 19 Mar 2020

General Motors has confirmed that it will begin a systematic orderly suspension of manufacturing operations in North America due to market conditions, to deep-clean facilities and continue to protect people. The suspension will last until at least March 30. Production status will be re-evaluated week-to-week after that.

Mary Barra, chairman and CEO, GM said: “We’ve been closely monitoring the Covid-19 situation to ensure we prevent the spread of the virus. In decision with the UAW, we will suspend production in our NA manufacturing operations. We will take a systematic approach, with safety as our top priority.

Meanwhile, the United Auto Workers (UAW), General Motors, Ford Motor Co and Fiat Chrysler (FCA) announced they are forming a COVID-19/Coronavirus Task Force to implement enhanced protections for manufacturing and warehouse employees at all three companies. UAW president, Rory Gamble, GM chairman and CEO, Mary Barra, Ford executive chairman, Bill Ford and president and CEO Jim Hackett, and FCA CEO Michael Manley will lead it.

In a joint statement, the leaders of GM, Ford and FCA said, “This is a fluid and unprecedented situation, and the task force will move quickly to build on the wide-ranging preventive measures we have put in place. We are all coming together to help keep our workforces safe and healthy.”

All three companies and the UAW are working to coordinate action to prevent the spread of the Covid-19/coronavirus, including enhanced visitor screening, increased cleaning and sanitizing of common areas and touch points, and implementing safety protocols for people with potential exposure, as well as those who exhibit flu-like symptoms.

They will be supported by Terry Dittes, vice president, UAW-GM Department, Gerald Kariem, vice president, UAW-Ford Department, Cindy Estrada, vice president, UAW-FCA Department and the medical staffs, and the manufacturing and labour leadership teams at all three companies

Rory Gamble, president, UAW said: “Workplace health and safety is a priority for us every day. All three companies have been taking steps to keep the Covid-19 out of their facilities and during this national emergency, we will do even more working together. We are focused on doing the right thing for our people, their families, our communities and the country. All options related to protecting against exposure to the virus are on the table.”