As General Motors continues forward with essential business operations in the face of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, some employees have become sick, including four employees from the Customer Care and Aftersales facility in Burton, Michigan.
According to a recent report from MLive, four employees from the Burton facility have tested positive for COVID-19. General Motors spokesman Jim Cain confirmed the news, but could not provide a timetable with regard to when the employees were tested, or their current condition. However, Cain did indicate that three of the workers who tested positive were off work prior to showing symptoms of the disease. Cain added that “in the fourth case, they just started feeling not very well.”
According to the report, the fourth General Motors employee who tested positive had contact with just one other individual at the Burton facility. That individual has now self-quarantined.
The General Motors Burton Customer Care and Aftersales facility is considered essential, as it provides packaging and processing of auto parts for various GM vehicles. As such, employees were asked in March to either move to temporary layoff status, or voluntarily continue work during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.
Employees who chose to continue working are required to undergo a number of precautions to slow the spread of the virus, including wearing face masks, hand washing, disinfecting procedures, social distancing, and temperature screening prior to entering the facility.
Meanwhile, General Motors has suspended manufacturing operations throughout North America, and has repurposed some of its production facilities to provide much-needed medical equipment. For example, GM has reconfigured its facility in Kokomo, Indiana, to produce life-saving ventilators in collaboration with Ventec Life Systems. The automaker is also producing face masks at its Warren Transmission Operations plant in Michigan.
Back in March, General Motors advised all employees who could work from home to do so. Later that month, the automaker also announced wide-ranging pay cuts for all employees.