DEARBORN, Feb. 26, 2021 – Ford fully supports President Biden’s call for businesses to make unique contributions for the workers and families they support as the country enters the next phase of COVID-19 response.
The Blue Oval, which produces more vehicles and employs more hourly workers than any other automaker in America, has been a leader in COVID-19 mitigation efforts since April and one of the first manufacturers to continuously make personal protective equipment (PPE) for its workforce, health care workers, first responders and the public.
“Through Project Apollo, Ford has been fighting COVID-19 and helping first responders and the public full force since March 2020,” said Kumar Galhotra, president, Americas & International Markets Group. “We will not stop until the job is done. As long as there is a way we can help, we are in.”
Ford data shows its protocols are helping keep its workforce safe. While the company is aware of employees in the U.S. who have tested positive for COVID-19, no one identified as a close contact in the workplace who was following Ford protocols has developed symptoms or tested positive for the virus since returning to work in May 2020.
Thanks to continuous monitoring through health surveys to help keep COVID-19 out of the workplace, Ford’s U.S. employees have safely entered Ford properties more than 9.5 million times since mid-March 2020. Tens of thousands of U.S. employees take a daily health and exposure screening to continue to help prevent the spread of the virus.
Working with the UAW, Ford created a communications campaign called “Heroes at Home” to encourage its workforce to follow company safety protocols both inside and outside the workplace. It kicked off last summer and includes posters, newsletters, emails and more to encourage the workforce to follow company protocols to help keep their families and communities safe.
Ford also is working with government officials around the world to help make sure employees have access to vaccines when they are available, and plans to make vaccines available to employees on a voluntary basis. The company is encouraging its workforce to be educated on the precautions they follow in and outside of the workplace, including being informed about the eligibility and benefits of the vaccine.
“From transforming how we work and serve customers to donating more than 98 million American-made face masks to neighbors in all 50 states, Ford and our UAW partners remain committed each day to keeping ourselves, our families and our communities safe,” said Galhotra. “We deeply support President Biden’s call on businesses to step up and come together to protect each other and finish strong.”
Ford launched its #FinishStrong initiative on New Year’s Eve to encourage people to come together, protect each other and help save lives until COVID-19 vaccines become more widely distributed. To date, Ford and its philanthropic arm, Ford Motor Company Fund, have distributed 98 million American-made masks and will hit 120 million masks donated to at-risk communities by mid-2021.
In addition to face masks, the company, in partnership with the UAW, has produced tens of millions of pieces of personal protective equipment to meet the strong demand. These include:
- 20 million face shields
- 50,000 patient ventilators
- More than 32,000 powered air-purifying respirators in collaboration with 3M
- 1.6 million washable isolation gowns
COVID-19 air filtration box fan kits
Ford, along with Lasko, the leader in home environment products, has developed an air filtration kit that people can make at home or in school. The air filtration kit supplements a room’s existing filtration system to further help reduce the risk of COVID-19 virus particle concentrations. The kits are based on scientific studies from academic and government research.
Ford will donate 20,000 air filtration kits to underserved communities via requests made to ppe.ford.com. The kits will appear on the website in March.
The filtration kit comprises an easy-to-assemble die-cut cardboard base, a 20-inch Lasko box fan, and a 20x20x4 air filter with a standard minimum efficiency reporting value of 13. The air filter is placed inside the folded base with the fan placed on top. The fan operates on high for maximum filtration, discharging clean air downward as it pulls in unfiltered air from above.