The coronavirus pandemic has resulted in stay-at-home orders in multiple states, including Pennsylvania, where SPS Technologies has a big factory with over 5,000 workers. However, some companies don’t seem to be following the coronavirus guidelines set forth by their state governments.
SPS Technologies in Jenkintown, Penn. is owned by Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway. The company did receive a waiver to remain open during the state's stay-at-home order, even though it appears to be classified as a nonessential business by the Pennsylvania governor's office. ValueWalk initially wrote about SPS Technologies last week. It sounds like the company continues to avoid following the requirements set forth by the state, this time regarding cleaning.
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Pennsylvania sets guidelines for staying open during coronavirus
The Pennsylvania governor's office published these safety measures for businesses that are staying open during the stay-at-home order. The governor's office requires businesses that are remaining open to "clean and disinfect high-touch areas routinely in accordance with CDC guidelines."
The governor's office also requires companies to ensure that they have enough employees to perform the appropriate cleaning to prevent the spread of COVID-19. They are also required to have security employees to "control access, maintain order, and enforce social distancing of at least 6 feet."
However, employees at SPS Technologies tell ValueWalk that the company isn't following the safety guidelines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Management has confirmed to employees that there were at least two definite cases of COVID-19 at a factory with 900 employees. They also said four other employees were suspected of having the virus.
SPS Technologies may not be following coronavirus measures
SPS Technologies texted employees on Monday to officially confirm that one employee tested positive for the coronavirus. The company also informed employees that a cleaning company would be coming in to disinfect the facility. The text also stated that third shift Monday night and first and second shifts today would report to work at the regular time.
Even though the company said it was having a cleaning service disinfect the factory, employees tell us that the only parts of the factory that were cleaned were the bathrooms. It is difficult to imagine that a factory could be deep cleaned without shutting it down for 24 hours to do it.
Employees also say that there is no hand soap for them to wash their hands. The company does finally have hand sanitizer, but that wasn't provide until the end of last week. An employee brought in dish soap for the bathroom since there was no hand soap, but they ran out of that.
SPS Technologies also reportedly isn't providing the security staff required to ensure that social distancing is being enforced during the coronavirus pandemic. Employees also tell us that the company continues to hold meetings where they're standing shoulder to shoulder in a single room.
Unfortunately, it's unclear what recourse employees have in dealing with an employer that isn't following the Pennsylvania governor's requirements. There isn't anyone to call to report the issue. Someone did report the company to OSHA, but a spokesperson told us last week that they would respond to that report. ValueWalk contacted SPS Technologies again for details on what is being done to prevent the spread of the coronavirus, but no response was given. We will update this article if one is received.