Asymptomatic and Mask Wearing

Following the CDC updated recommended isolation and quarantine period, the Association of Flight Attendants-CWA International President Sara Nelson released the following statement:

“We said we wanted to hear from medical professionals on the best guidance for quarantine, not from corporate America advocating for a shortened period due to staffing shortages. The CDC gave a medical explanation about why the agency has decided to reduce the quarantine requirements from 10 to five days, but the fact that it aligns with the number of days pushed by corporate America is less than reassuring.

“There are two significant caveats in the guidance that recognize concerns raised by our union. CDC recommends reducing quarantine to five days only if asymptomatic and with continued mask wearing for an additional five days. If any business pressures a worker to return to work before they feel better we will make clear it is an unsafe work environment, which will cause a much greater disruption than any ‘staffing shortages.’

“We cannot allow pandemic fatigue to lead to decisions that extend the life of the pandemic or put policies on the backs of workers. Already the lack of paid sick leave creates pressure on workers to come to work sick. Corporations that fail to recognize this with paid sick leave, or pressure workers to come to work sick or face discipline, are failing their workers and their customers. Any Member of Congress who doesn’t support paid sick leave is saying that their constituents’ lives don’t matter.

“After more than 800,000 funerals, millions suffering effects of long COVID, our hospitals so full people can’t get the medical treatment they need, and frontline workers facing violent attacks simply for working to keep everyone safe, can we finally take this pandemic seriously and do what needs to be done to end it? Our workplace is the world. We will isolate ourselves from the world if we don’t lead on safety. This is not freedom. Only truth and solidarity will get us there.”

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