Report: Three Tyson Georgia Employees Have Died

April 10, 2020
All three worked at a Camilla, Ga., chicken processing plant.

Three employees at a Tyson Foods chicken processing plant in south Georgia died this week after testing positive for the coronavirus, according to reports from local media and the union representing them.

A 55-year-old woman died April 9 after spending more than a week on a ventilator, according to the New York Times. Despite feeling ill more than a week ago, the 15-year employee of the Camilla, Ga., plant was pressured by the company to stay on the job, according to her children, who talked to the Times.

The Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union, which represents poultry processing workers across the southern U.S., said two employees of the same plant died earlier.

We asked Tyson to confirm the deaths and to comment, but had not heard back by noon today (April 10).

According to the Times, many of the Camilla plant’s employees live in nearby Albany, Ga., which has been called “one of the epicenters of the coronavirus outbreak.”

The cold, damp conditions of meat and poultry plants appear to be conducive to getting sick. The only other confirmed death we’re aware of was an employee at a JBS beef processing plant in Greeley, Colo. But COVID-19 has been confirmed at meat and poultry plants of Smithfield Foods, Maple Leaf, Cargill and Perdue, as well as a handful of other food plants.

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