Facing a question on how the state will help protect workers in meat processing plants throughout Virginia, State Health Commissioner Norm Oliver acknowledged COVID-19 outbreaks at plants across the country and said the state is issuing guidance to help make sure workers are protected. Companies are currently not required to share the numbers of COVID-19 cases at facilities, per Virginia law. State officials have cited patient privacy and safety.

Some meat plants have either temporarily closed or closed indefinitely due to outbreaks of cases, including one at a Smithfield pork plant in South Dakota.

Tyson Foods announced last week that all employees will be required to wear masks while on the property.

Tyson also said it is increasing distance on the production floor,  installing barriers, allowing more time between shifts and have stepped up deep cleaning at the Tempranceville plant.

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