Covid rampant in sugar industry

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…GUYSUCO expresses “deep concern”
…employees who were in contact with COVID-positive patients asked to report information to supervisors

Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Sasenarine Singh

The Guyana Sugar Corporation (GuySuCo) has noted its “deep concern” about the increasing number of workers being tested COVID-19 positive even as the Corporation’s Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Sasenarine Singh has urged staff to take additional action to protect themselves.

In a press release on Wednesday, GuySuCo stated: “The Guyana Sugar Corporation has noted with deep concerns the increasing number of its employees across the Industry who have tested positive for COVID-19. The Management of the GuySuCo has acted swiftly and decisively in collaboration with the Ministry of Health to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 by conducting PCR testing and contact tracing of our employees who have either had symptoms of COVID-19 or were in contact with persons who tested positive for COVID-19.”

The note of concern comes even as the deaths for 2021, January to present, have already surpassed the deaths for 2020, March to December.

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GuySuCo in the press statement, asked all employees identified as having close contact with any person who tested positive for COVID-19 to report such immediately to their immediate supervisor and follow the advice of the medical team to visit the nearest Ministry of Health COVID-19 testing site for evaluation.

The Employees were also asked to remain in quarantine while awaiting the result of their COVID-19 test. If the result is negative, the Corporation said that said persons may return to work upon receipt of clearance from the MOH COVID-19 unit.

However, it urged persons who are tested COVID-19 positive to strictly follow the MOH’s instructions and stay in self-isolation until deemed safe to return to work by the COVID-19 Unit.

During this period, workers in quarantine or self-isolation are also required to submit their National Insurance Scheme medical slip signed by the attending doctor at the Ministry of Health COVID-19 testing site.

In addition, the Management of GuySuCo said that it continues to maintain all COVID-19 protocols in accordance with the national COVID-19 guidelines to ensure all of its employees’ health and safety.

Scores of sugar workers recently staged countrywide protests for pay increase

As part of established protocols, GuySuCo also said that it continues to deploy professional sanitization teams to fumigate workplace areas (routinely and as needed); provide all protective gear including masks and sanitization materials for staff; ensure a socially distant work environment and facilitate COVID-19 vaccination drives at all of its operating estates.

“We must follow rules of social distancing, mask up and wash up as often as possible,” said Singh in a message to the workers during recent field meetings across the three operating estates.

“It is our individual responsibility, for our own safety for example not to get on board overcrowded transportation. The Corporation has contracted sufficient lorries to transport workers. These lorries are required under our contract to be washed thoroughly and sanitized twice daily to ensure the safety of our workers. All information shared via WhatsApp 624 0256 will be confidential and the necessary actions will be taken to address any issue reported.”

Singh also iterated GuySuCo’s commitment to working diligently to maintain safety and security precautions for the benefit of workers and their families.



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