Public service workers around the country are facing an ever decreasing supply of personal protective equipment in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, and labor leaders across the country are calling on president Donald Trump to act.
The Medical Supply Chain Emergency Act, introduced by U.S. Senators Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) and Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and championed by AFSCME president Lee Saunders and others, would force the U.S. president to to implement the Defense Production Act of 1950, resulting in the federalization, production, economic regulation, and distribution of at least 500 million N95 respirators, 200,000 medical ventilators, 20 million face shields, 500 million pairs of gloves, and 20 million surgical gowns.
“The least the president can do is stand up to the Chamber of Commerce, pick up a pen and demand the production of essential medical gear,” Saunders told reporters. “To see pictures of nurses in New York City hospitals wearing garbage bags because they don’t have personal protective equipment is utterly shameful. What happens to them when they get sick? What happens to their patients? This is a train wreck happening in slow motion right before our eyes.”
Read more about the dangers facing workers lacking personal protective equipment and the benefits of the Medical Supply Chain Emergency Act here.