General Chairman’s Update
Hello Brothers and Sisters,
I’m writing to everyone to provide an update with respect to COVID-19 vaccinations and the Carrier’s filtrations efforts on the trains and various buildings. I met with management earlier this week and we discussed when the vaccines will be made available to the rank and file. The Carrier has stated that the Engineers, Conductors and Assistant Conductors, along with all the operators are frontline employees and are classified in a category of “1-B”.
The process that the Carrier anticipates occurring is that the vaccine (Moderna) will be provided in February and the company will contract with CVS and if needed Walgreen to administer the Vaccine. The vaccine requires two doses with a minimum of three weeks separation and it does not contain the virus. The vaccine will be provided on a volunteer basis, however, if any person receives the first dose, he/she will be required to receive the 2nd dose.
Any person who has tested positive, must wait approximately 90 days before receiving the vaccine. Once a person is vaccinated, he/she will receive a card that will verify which vaccine and dose they have received. It is highly recommended that the card is secured as the airline and other industries have indicated that they will want “proof” of vaccination prior for entry of their vehicles. [additionally, we were informed that the CDC will have a database to track person(s) who have been vaccinated]
SEPTA provided an update on their filtration/sanitization plans for the trainsets and buildings. New filters (which are believed to be effective against COVID-19 and other viruses) have been received by the Carrier earlier this week and will be implemented on some Silver-liner IV trainsets, tested for thirty days and if successful will be employed on the entire fleet.
The plan is the same for the Silver-liner V fleet. The Carrier is also planning to employ a UV technology in the HVAC system. SEPTA stated that studies have demonstrated that UV lighting is effective on the COVID-19 virus and harmless to passengers/crews. The plan is to install the system in the HVAC, and it will be out of sight to anyone.
The above systems will be periodically checked and replaced. Lastly, SEPTA stated that businesses informed them that they plan to reopen their buildings sometime in the summer. This I believe is an update that was necessary to provide to you as soon as possible. If any of you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to me or any of the Officers.