GE Appliances (GEA) is paying its factory workers and service technicians an additional $2 an hour as a show of appreciation for their dedication during the pandemic.
“The additional pay is our way of saying ‘thank you’ for their efforts during this challenging time in our world,” the appliance giant said.
The salary increase follows reports of union-led employee protests over unsafe working conditions at the company’s Appliance Park production complex in Louisville, Ky. GEA said it has adapted unprecedented safety precautions at its plants, including no-touch temperature screenings; spacing workers apart by six feet or more on production lines; installing barriers between work stations; and providing hand sanitizers, wipes and other disinfecting supplies throughout its facilities.
According to the local GEA workers’ union, the manufacturer has also agreed to grant leaves of absence to employees with underlying health issues or family care concerns, the Courier Journal reported.
In addition, GEA previously reduced or temporarily suspended operations at factories across four states to help curb the spread of COVID-19.
“The health and safety of our employees comes first,” the company said. “We are grateful to our production and service teams for the work they do.”