On May 2, 2020, the Texas Department of State Health Services (TX-DSHS) asked the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) to inspect the Tyson Foods Amarillo Beef Plant to evaluate Tyson’s health and safety controls related to the spread of COVID-19. This facility is over 1 million square feet, where over 4,400 Tyson employees work.
A CDC team inspected the plant on May 5, 2020. The CDC published its 13-page inspection report on May 15, 2020. In its report, the CDC recommends Tyson take numerous actions in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 between its employees, and into our communities.
The CDC recommended Tyson take action in the following eight areas in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19 among its employees:
- Hierarchy of controls
- Entry screening
- Contact tracing
- Sick leave policies
- Social distancing
- Source control
- Hand hygiene & sanitation
- Training & communication
It is unclear why Tyson, one of the largest companies in the world, needed the CDC to come to its facility and tell it what it should be doing in order to keep its employees safe during the coronavirus pandemic. It is not yet known how many Tyson employees contracted the virus, and how many have died, because Tyson chose not to implement the necessary safety protocols. Based on current reporting, it appears that over 5,000 Tyson employees have contracted the virus, and over 20 have died.
For more information on Tyson’s conduct during the coronavirus pandemic: