1 death among 25 employees infected with a coronavirus at Maple Lodge Farms


One person died among 25 employees infected with COVID-19 at Maple Lodge Farms.

A statement released on the poultry website on Thursday said the employee died of the virus last month. The deceased employee was one of 25 employees who tested positive.

Maple Lodge Farms director of corporate affairs, Carol Gardin, told 680 NEWS that they first learned of an employee who tested positive on April 16. Peel Public Health and the other employees were informed at this time.

The first cases were not reported to the public until a statement was released on May 4. According to Peel Public Health, 24 cases had been reported to them as of April 30.

The Brampton company says that whenever an employee tests positive, they have notified public health and implemented preventative measures to stop the spread.

When asked why the cases had not been reported to the public, Gardin said, “Public health is the authority responsible for public reporting. It is essential that the figures are provided by the competent authority to ensure the accuracy and integrity of the data. “

She added that after the reporting of each case, a full investigation had been conducted in cooperation with the Canadian Food Inspection Agency.

Following an in-depth investigation by CityNews, Gardin added that following the in-depth investigation, public health has issued instructions to Maple Lodge, based on the results, regarding measures to limit the risk of spread. She says that these instructions were strictly followed.

“If members of the public were in danger, part of the orders would have included an order to inform the public, but that was not the case,” said Gardin.

In a statement, the union that represents the plant’s workers said it was deeply saddened by the loss of a member. They say their discussions with Maple Lodge have led to the implementation of many security protocols.

“These safety measures include the use of appropriate personal protective equipment (PPE), staggered breaks and shifts to maintain physical distance, improved cleaning for all areas of the plant and provisions allowing members to get to the factory and be safe, ”said Shawn Haggerty, president of Local 175 of the United Food and Commercial Workers (UFCW).

Maple Lodge has temporarily suspended a third of its operations to allow for a risk assessment and a thorough cleaning of the plant. Employees are required to wear masks at all times and have been fitted with additional personal protective equipment and non-essential visitors have been banned from the factory.

The poultry plant employs more than 2,900 workers in the communities where it operates.

Note: A previous version of this article stated that Maple Lodge Farms first learned of an employee who tested positive on April 15. They then corrected the date to April 16 and this article has been changed to reflect the correct date.


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