USW Applauds New Executive Orders to Protect Workers, Pushes for Permanent Action

Contact: Chelsey Engel, 412-562-1178, cengel@usw.org

United Steelworkers (USW) International President Tom Conway issued the following statement today welcoming President Joe Biden’s executive orders focused on combatting the coronavirus pandemic, and specifically the order urging the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and Mining Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) to take immediate steps to protect workers:

“Our union, and the labor movement as a whole, have called upon OSHA and MSHA for nearly a year to issue workplace health standards to protect front-line and essential workers as they fight the deadly coronavirus pandemic.

“Now, nearly a year after the outbreak of this crisis, workers may start to get a measure of relief thanks to President Biden’s executive order signed today calling upon these agencies to enforce worker health and safety requirements, as well as to consider developing Emergency Temporary Standards (ETS).

“This order is a big step in the right direction, and we applaud the president in heeding the call. We hope the agencies take the next step in creating first temporary, then permanent and enforceable standards.

“We are also encouraged to see the president directing relevant agencies to use the Defense Production Act (DPA) to speed up the manufacturing of testing and vaccine supplies, personal protective equipment (PPE), and more items needed to fight this deadly disease. Combatting the virus will require sustained commitment, and we applaud the Biden administration’s bold action to help protect the American people.

“America is nothing without its workers, and we must never stop fighting for their safety and dignity at work.”

The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, mining, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining, the service, public and health care sectors and higher education.

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USW@WORK (USW magazine)
Editor R.J. Hufnagel

For industry specific inquiries,
Call USW Communications at 412-562-2442

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United Steelworkers
Communications Department
60 Blvd. of the Allies
Pittsburgh, PA 15222