Everyone who works in education needs to be reminded that supermarket workers have been going to work through this whole thing.

USA Today reports:

Campus workers sue N.C. university system, cite unsafe conditions due to pandemic

At least 16 workers on campuses in the University of North Carolina school system are suing the schools for working conditions that put them “at an increased risk of exposure to COVID-19.”

Workers at UNC said that they “should not be required to be exposed to an increased risk of getting sick” due to students’ return to campus, said the lawsuit filed Monday by members of the North Carolina Public Service Workers Union, UE Local 150 and members of the North Carolina American Association of University Professors.

Bringing students back to campus places workers at higher risk of exposure to the virus, and despite masks, social distancing and hand-washing requirements implemented by the school, it is impossible to “control whether thousands of students located within their campus communities comply” with these requirements, said the plaintiffs in the lawsuit, filed at the Wake County Superior Court.

“Everyone involved in making the decision to reopen these campuses did so with the knowledge that it places these employees at a greater risk of exposure to COVID-19 than they would have otherwise been exposed to” had the schools gone online in the fall, said Gary K. Shipman, the lawyer who filed the case, in a statement.

The UNC system shut down residence halls when there were less than 10 cases reported in North Carolina in the spring, but now is reopening with some in-person classes as daily case numbers rise into the thousands.


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