Bulletin 3/25/20


On March 24, 2020, the union met with the company to discuss safety for workers who are working due to the waiver granted by Governor Tom Wolf. The company has communicated the employees currently working are designated as “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers” providing renewal parts that are necessary to move the nation’s critical supplies that are vital to the nation’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak. The union has requested the Governor’s Office provide the scope of work the exemptions Wabtec was granted by the waiver. We have also requested the state provide a contact to enforce compliance. The Unions request is to ensure all employees, their families and our community are not subjected to unnecessary risk. We continue to receive complaints the company continues to grant non-essential workers, contractors, and vendors access to the facility. We have also received complaints that workers are performing work for new international orders. The local addressed these concerns with the company and demanded they comply to limit exposure. The following list represents just a few of the risks, safety measures and ideas the group discussed to ensure we can all work safely during this pandemic and avoid pulling resources from hospitals where supplies are in high demand and low supply.

  1. • Enforce critically needed employees only
    • Increase Communications
    • Adequate sanitizer and disinfectant supply
    • Point of contact for supplies
    • Single point entry to buildings / with temperature scans
    • Propping all interior doors to eliminate unnecessary contact
    • Develop response protocol for employees who test positive
    • Checklist and audit of supplies and sanitation performed prior to and during
    each shift.
    • Identifying multiple suppliers for PPE and alternative solutions to avoid depleting medical stock.
    • Limiting touchpoints
    • Truck drivers’ delivery protocol
    • Cushman and Kubota restrictions
    • Color-coded cleaning supplies to eliminate cross contamination between bathrooms and breakrooms
    • Single point of contact for cleaning concerns. Increase cleaning frequency in areas working.
    • Mobile hand washing stations
    The union, safety coordinators, senior plant manager, plant managers, union relations, EHS and plant protection participated in the discussion.
  2. The union is also working on a schedule with union relations and the Wabtec attorneys for effects bargaining. We will continue to keep you informed as we proceed and new information becomes available. We thank everyone for their patience during this unprecedented time. We encourage everyone to adhere to County Executive Kathy Dalkemper stay at home order when not at work. This is the only way we can truly mitigate the spread of Covid -19. Please continue to monitor uelocal506.com for updates.
    Stay safe. Stay Healthy.

The following communication was the latest Erie Plant Update from Joe Cavalier.

Erie Team, in an effort to keep you informed on everything concerning COVID-19 we have answered some of the frequently asked questions below.

What are we doing to continue to keep employees safe at the Erie site?
The company has stood-up a cross functional safety team to receive feedback on operations and provide recommendations for improvements to be implemented to further enhance safety at the site. There is a running list of projects with assigned owners that are working to execute different safety initiatives.
We will continue to monitor employees’ symptoms and follow CDC guidelines by sending employees home to self-quarantined and seek medical care. This does not mean that the employee has COVID – 19, but they may have been in contact with someone that has been confirmed or suspected of having COVID – 19.

  1. What can we do about incoming truckdrivers to prevent possible contamination?
    A team is working to come up with a standard process for limiting the exposure of interaction between truckdrivers and our employees. Solutions being implemented include:
    • Portable toilets at the visitor’s gate
    • Signage at the loading docks
    • Quarantine areas at the loading docks
    • Not requiring signatures for UPS and FEDEX deliveries
  • Are we allowing visitors into the plant?
    Except for individuals supporting life-sustaining activities, all visitors have been restricted at the Erie site.

What is our current site risk level?
The current status of the Erie site is minor. Minor is defined by a transmission has been isolated or controlled within the region.

  1. There was a recent announcement in Erie regarding a “shelter in place” order. What does that mean for employees at the Erie site?
    According to the stay at home guidance (shelter in place) by Governor Wolf, employees may still report to work for life sustaining business activities. For those that must travel to the plant and are concerned about getting stopped, please print the attached document explaining the exemption. For more information visit https://www.governor.pa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/03.23.20-Stay-At-Home-Order-Guidance.pdfhttps://www.governor.pa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/03.23.20-Stay-At-Home-Order-Guidance.pdf
    Allowable essential travel also includes:
    • Care for elderly, minors, dependents, persons with disability or other vulnerable persons
    • Travel to or return to a place of residence
    • Travel required by law enforcement or court order
    • Allowable individual activities include:
    o Tasks to maintain health and safety to include:
     Obtaining medical supplies
     Obtaining Food / groceries
     Visiting health care professionals
     Obtaining supplies to work from home
     Necessary supplies for themselves or family

We will continue to keep you updated as information becomes available to us. For more information visit the internal coronavirus website for company-wide updates and the In Case of Crisis app for Erie Site updates.


As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our employees around the world, we wanted to make you aware of some healthcare benefits available if you become sick or need remote health assistance.

COVID-19 Testing
All COVID-19 testing is covered at 100%, when recommended by a medical professional. If you have any plan concerns or questions, please contact the Highmark Concierge at 1-833-227-9370. The contact information is also on the back of your Highmark ID card.

We are waiving all Teladoc co-payments for the next 90 days for all virtual visits, regardless of whether the visit is related to the diagnosis or treatment of COVID-19. Teladoc provides you and your eligible dependents with 24/7/365 access to U.S. board-certified physicians. In addition to primary care physicians, Teladoc gives you access to specialists for behavioral health and dermatology.

We encourage all members to complete their registration and medical history through the Teladoc website for Wabtec Highmark members, before you need to request a visit. Once you have registered, download the Teladoc app and turn on all notifications. Provide both email and phone number when requesting a visit, which will allow for optimal communications. For fastest service, Teladoc suggests that members requesting an appointment for COVID-19 related concerns, request a “first available” appointment that is voice only.

Teladoc has added additional capacity to their network, but wait times are longer than usual and will fluctuate depending on the time of day and geographic location.

  1. Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
    The LifeWorks Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offers confidential counseling and guidance for personal problems. This benefit is available to you, all immediate family members and all individuals living in your household. It is offered to all employees, even if you waive medical coverage. You and your family may use this service for up to five sessions per issue, per year at no cost. The EAP offers confidential counseling and guidance for dealing with a personal problem, such as:
    • Stress
    • Family problems
    • Relationship concerns
    • Alcohol/drug abuse
    • Depression
    • Anxiety
    • Elder care
    • Budget and financial concerns
    • Parenting problems
    • Grief
    • Job-related issues
    • Legal issues

To obtain assistance, call 1-877-234-5151 (English) or 1-888-732-9020 (Spanish), or access their website at www.lifeworks.comwww.lifeworks.com. Your username and password are both wabtec. Trained counselors are available 24 hours a day. The counselor helps you to accurately identify the problem, discuss possible solutions and determine if you need additional resources. If no counselors are in your area, or if you need immediate assistance, counseling can be conducted over the phone. The information you discuss is completely confidential. Wabtec does not receive any details of the call.

Prescription Refills
CVS Caremark is waiving early refill limits on 30-day prescriptions for maintenance medications at any in-network pharmacy, which allows members to fill maintenance medication prescriptions ahead of their normal fill schedule and maintain an adequate supply of medication on hand.

We have also directed CVS Caremark to also allow members to refill their maintenance medications ahead of schedule if requested. We strongly recommend you take action now to refill eligible maintenance prescriptions for 90-day supplies. You or your pharmacist may call 1-877-347-7444 to request an override for a 90-day supply prescription.

CVS Pharmacy has also waived charges for home delivery of all prescription medications, if available in your area. You also have the option of home delivery from CVS Caremark Mail Service pharmacy with no delivery cost.