HCMC factories plan to keep production going amid Covid-19 isolation

By Le Tuyet   June 10, 2021 | 03:45 pm PT
HCMC factories plan to keep production going amid Covid-19 isolation
Workers in the factory of Vi Na Kitchen Ware JSC, Tan Binh Industrial Zone, Tan Phu District, HCMC. Photo by VnExpress/Thanh Pho.
Many HCMC factories are making provisions for employees to live on the premises and keep production going if they are isolated because of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The M.D.K Garment Factory of the Thuan Phuong Embroideries Garment Co., Ltd (Thuan Phuong Group), which is located in District 12, was isolated starting last week over a worker being a Covid-19 suspect. Two-hundred workers working in the same department were taken to centralized quarantine facilities. The remaining 1,000 workers had their samples taken for testing and were obliged to stay in the factory for 14 days.

Mai Duc Thuan, CEO of the Thuan Phuong Group, said the board of directors paid a part of the workers’ salary in advance, besides sending three trucks of essential goods like toothbrushes, shampoo, cups and basins to the factory the very same day the factory was isolated. The factory was cleaned up to make room for workers to sleep. The Covid-19 prevention board of the factory was tasked with supervising and ensuring workers comply with prevention measures.

"The company had prepared plans for every possible situation so it could react proactively," said Thuan. He cited as example the division of the accounting department into two groups, so that if a Covid-19 case was found in one group, forcing them to quarantine, the company still has the other group working.

Four days since it was placed under isolation, 1,200 workers tested negative for the coronavirus. The factory resumed operation with 90 percent of its labor force.

A few kilometers away from M.D.K factory is the Vi Na Kitchen Ware JSC located in Tan Binh Industrial Zone, Tan Phu District. This factory had 800 workers stay in for more than 10 days. The company was the first enterprise in HCMC’s industrial zone to be isolated due to a suspected Covid-19 case on May 28.

The company instantly set up 80 restrooms, installed 70 faucets and fans, bought over 800 sleeping mats, thousands of clothes hangers, mosquito repellents, and sanitizers. Some areas of the factory were cleared to be used as clothes hanging areas. Each worker has three to four square meters as sleeping places.

Workers are served three main meals and two snacks a day, aside from taking multivitamin each morning. Lunch breaks and shift ends are different among workers to ensure distance between employees.

Its Covid-19 prevention board consists of 30 members from the board of directors and different departments who take turns to supervise and ensure that workers comply with pandemic prevention measures. Half of its office workers participate in serving meals for workers, disinfecting the factory, and supporting workers in numerous matters, from family, children to health

Nearly 800 workers of the company have tested negative for the coronavirus twice, and its business production continued.

Many enterprises in HCMC that have not recorded any Covid-19 case have also made plans for workers to live in so that production can continue without a break A company in Saigon Hi-Tech Park, Thu Duc City, has prepared tents, mattresses and other essential products for its 6,000 workers, just in case.

Machinery manufacturer Juki Vietnam Co., Ltd, located in Tan Thuan Export Processing Zone in District 7, recently collected workers' opinions on a contingency plan in case a Covid-19 patient is detected, because the factory is not big enough for all 1,000 workers to live in, explained labor union leader Nguyen Phuoc.

HCMC has 17 export processing, industrial, and high technology zones that employ 320,000 workers. The Municipal People's Committee has requested factories to prepare plans to ensure workers’ safety and keep production going in the event Covid-19 cases being detected.

The city had recorded 572 Covid-19 cases as of Friday morning in the fourth outbreak that hit the country on April 27.

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