TRACY- After we broke the story last week that as many as 50 people at the Safeway Distribution warehouse in Tracy were infected with coronavirus, today Governor Newsom confirmed one fact there have been 51 confirmed cases. Now our sources report 6 additional cases today including a union business agent.
After it was made public that employees were being infected including one who died, Safeway announced measures they were taken. Those measures have not calmed the nerves of workers who tell us they are working 16 hour days six days a week. “What once took four hours to do, now takes 16”, a worker told us as a result of so many workers being out sick or with symptoms.
In a photo of inside the facility during a start up meeting, a confidential source tells us that there should normally be 80 employees present for the shift. Workers from other warehouse companies had to be brought in and assistant managers from the grocery stores as well we are told.
“Here’s what they do with the machines of the people who get infected”, another source says. “They failed us. I’m a worker at the Safeway distribution center and this company has failed us”. Sources also tell us that employees were showing up to work with symptoms still working for fear of losing out on pay.
The company has taken measures including removing chairs so employees can not sit next to each other, but employees fear their best interests are still not at the forefront.
What adds to the conundrum is the strict enforcement of the labor bargaining agreement between Safeway and the teamsters local 439 that represents them, including sick leave. As a result of the more than 50 confirmed cases at a center that employees 1,800 people, Governor Newsom announced an executive order today giving food supply workers two weeks paid leave of infected. The employees union Teamsters 439 has yet to make any public statement now despite the cluster of infections or death or one of their long time members or one of their own business agents reportedly also now being infected.
The following is a Facebook post from one of the infected workers.
As of today these are the number of confirmed cases of coronavirus in the 209. Of the 646 cases, the number of cases at the Safeway Distribution center that supplies food and supplies to the grocery stores throughout northern California accounts for 9%.