Working with a number of partners, WMC developed a prototype that can be quickly adopted by the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. The platform uses an algorithm to determine the risk for an individual business based on a number of factors:Oh, so small rural communities are treated on a different scale from urban ones? And then those small communities will raise their risk levels, which takes away any safety advantage that might exist, in communities that don’t have the health care infrastructure that urban areas do.
Infection Rate in County of Operation
Population Density of County of Operation
Interactive Concentration (Based on NAICS Code Business Sector)
Health Care Capacity/Utilization in County of Operation
And I’m sure no one in Wisconsin or other states would travel from one area to the other, and increase risks for those communities that have fewer restrictions. How would you even try to prevent such a thing? Under the Constitution, you can’t, outside of branding everyone from an outside area as a health risk (good luck defending that one).
But wait, there’s more! WMC also wants to give ratings to various companies and industries.
Companies would be given a risk factor of minimal, moderate or substantial based on an in-depth analysis of more than 300 NAICS codes and various data points from public health sources.
The higher the risk, the more precautions businesses would be required to take to avoid further spread of COVID-19. Precautions can include, but are not limited to social distancing among employees and customers, operating at reduced capacity, increasing use of personal protective equipment (PPE) and stepping up cleaning procedures.
The platform relies on readily available government health data. So, as public health conditions change, it will automatically dial-up or dial-down businesses’ safety requirements – a nimble approach not found in other plans.
I’m sure there will no favoritism with these decisions, especially among WMC’s own members. (sarcasm off)
In addition, how will businesses be forced to "dial up" these precautions? By asking them “pretty please?” and hoping they will do it? Or will this have to be overseen by DHS...which is who WMC is trying to take decision-making abilities away from? Absurd.
The WMC proposal itself is ridiculous enough. But then realize that the record daily jumps in coronavirus that we have seen this week are due to outbreaks at workplaces.
Brown County coronavirus cases shoot past 500; meat-processing plants account for 267 https://t.co/nB5hEgnSgs— Journal Sentinel (@journalsentinel) April 23, 2020
'We are scared for our lives': At least 17% of Wisconsin coronavirus cases are health care employees https://t.co/ITEVZRSi0S— Journal Sentinel (@journalsentinel) April 24, 2020
More than 1 in 6 COVID cases in Wisconsin are health care workers.
Faced with serious health risks every day and an ongoing shortage of adequate personal protective equipment, nurses, doctors and others who work in health care settings are expressing growing outrage as the pandemic rages on.Do we see WMC and their GOPpuppets asking to increase safety regulations and supplement pay for front-line workers? OF COURSE NOT, and in fact, WMC got the GOPs in the Legislature to gut workers' comp protections for first responders that are more likely to come into contact with COVID-19.
As the nation labels them heroes and honors them with songs, free meals and temporary housing, many front-line workers say they appreciate the support, but what they really want is proper gear to protect themselves and paid time off if they get sick.
“We’re frustrated that we continue to show up for battle against an enemy unlike one we’ve ever seen, without the protection, resources or the support that we need to do our job safely,” said Ryann Streicher, a labor and delivery nurse from the Madison area. “We’re frustrated that every day we work through fatigue, stress and hazards because we care about our patients, but we don’t see that same commitment from our elected leaders and our employers to support us in our vital work.”
We've seen in recent weeks is that workplaces can’t be trusted to take measures that keeps their employees healthy, and are likely making things worse in a lot of cases (especially among businesses who try to keep their employees on the job and hide information from their workers. Hello, ULine!)
With that in mind, why in the hell would we even consider allowing these businesses to self-regulate in an opened-up economy? That seems like a recipe to eventually have more COVID-19 shutdowns, and a much slower recovery for both public health and the economy.
WMC and their self-absorbed greed is the problem, not the solution. And they need to be laughed out of the public debate about how we go forward and get more people back to work.