Why aren’t members masking?
To the Editor:
I am deeply disappointed every time I see photos from a PEF event where almost no one is masked. COVID-19 is still causing death and disability around the world. Much of the messaging from government officials says that individuals should protect themselves. Aside from the lack of scientific basis for this sentiment, unions are supposed to be about workers protecting and supporting each other. The whole idea of unionization is that we can do more together than as individuals.
By refusing to do even the bare minimum to lower COVID-19 risks, union leadership is sending the message that disabled workers and workers with vulnerable loved ones are not welcome. No one should be asked to choose between their health and having a voice in the union. Insistence on in-person events effectively silences our voices.
There are certainly ways to make gatherings safer, but they require us all to work together. Couldn’t we at least try?
Editor’s Note: Members are welcome and encouraged to wear masks at events and meetings if they or their family members are vulnerable to COVID-19. With the lifting of mask mandates, PEF no longer requires masking. Should state or county public health guidelines change, we will adjust our policies accordingly.