Vaccinating poultry processing workers is a priority

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Vaccinating poultry processing workers is a priority

Now that vaccination against COVID-19 seems to be coming soon, in addition to health personnel and the elderly, meat packing workers should be prioritized.

Governments seem stunned at the pandemic, in the sense that after nine months, a myriad of administrative procedures are not yet possible. Government offices in many countries remain closed. I think they have not realized that there are masks, home office and the Cloud, alcoholic gel, transparent acrylic screens to serve the public, social distancing, foot dips, and a host of measures that are already in place in many regions.

They have simply not been adapted. Zero resilience.

However, the meat processing industry, including the poultry processing industry, made a series of immediate changes to protect workers and, above all, not disrupt the supply chain. Workers have been on the front line of meat supply.

That is why the North American Meat Institute (NAMI) has just issued a letter urging U.S. authorities to consider meat packing plant workers as a priority in the COVID-19 vaccination process. This, of course, does not detract from the priority of those who work in the health sector and the elderly in retirement homes.

I would like to emphasize that in these months there have been attempts to blame the poultry industry for their high concentration of personnel and for the fact that there were some disease outbreaks. The industry responded without a word of complaint. Adaptations were immediately made, demonstrating great resilience. And, as the NAMI press release says, “the supply chain remains intact.”

This resilience demonstrated by new equipment and facility adaptations, personal protective equipment, improved ventilation systems, disinfection programs and protocols, a multitude of tests and a titanic training task have kept COVID-19 at bay in meat plants, while figures generally affect virtually all countries.

I welcome the NAMI initiative, which does not only give priority to its workers, real covidian heroes, but implicitly recognizes the work done by the meat and poultry industry.

So you may still be unable to obtain a birth certificate or a passport, but you will be able to eat chicken.

What do you think?