COVID-19 UPDATE for March 25, 2020

Good Evening Members,

Tonight we want to take this opportunity to extend a warm round of applause and a HUGE “Thank you” to those Healthcare Professionals who have been battling this pandemic since day one!  These front-line workers are risking their lives everyday by caring for those that are symptomatic and/or have been diagnosed with COVID-19.  Despite their years of training and experience on how to protect themselves against transmittable diseases, both through practices and PPE, these doctors, nurses and paramedics are not only contracting this deadly virus but are succumbing to it.   The dedication, commitment, and sacrifice of these brave individuals deserves our acknowledgement and our gratitude.
We would be remiss not to recognize the many other professionals, semi-professionals, skilled tradespeople, and labourers from various sectors of business and industry who are also risking much by continuing to work during this time of crisis.  We are most grateful and appreciative of the work you are continuing to do, day in and day out, to keep our country going.
There has been much inquiry and speculation from our members as to what the expectation will be not just next week, but in the coming months.  As of today we still have no answers and continue to await a decision from our Employer in this regard.  We have not received any further information regarding the K-12 system here in BC other than the message from Minister Fleming last week.
What we can tell you is that the message from our Provincial and Federal Health Officers and other Government Officials is to “Stay Home” in order to help prevent the spread of this virus.  Restrict being in common areas and maintain a minimum of a 2m distance if you must go out in public.  We have to minimize the number of people touching shared surfaces, and potentially running into each other.  Shared spaces need to be closed down or restricted to an appropriate number of people given the size of the space.
There were 42 new cases of COVID-19 in BC for a total of 659 as of today, and one additional death.  The province is in a critical phase with their personal protective equipment for healthcare workers, and are looking at ways to address this situation.
The message today was clear, if we are going to come together we need to do this virtually thus ensuring a safe space is maintained at all times.  Therefore working from home, connecting with friends and family via the internet, or simply using the phone to communicate needs to be our new normal; at least for the time being.
All we can do now is wait and hope that the plea’s from our Medical Professionals, are heard by government and further action is taken before the end of the week?
We will continue to keep our members informed as the situation unfolds….
In Solidarity,
CUPE 411 Executive