Workers who handle waste and recyclables support the health of our communities, economies, and the environment at the expense of their own health and wellbeing. On a daily basis, they may be exposed to hazardous materials, such as household cleaners, pesticides, and medical waste. The COVID-19 pandemic only heightens these health risks, particularly to informal waste pickers who collect the recyclable materials that we throw in the trash.
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While the COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in large-scale lockdowns, many workers are still required to report to work in crowded workplaces with a lack of adequate protections against the virus.
As we at Verité take stock of COVID-19’s many implications for employers and supply chain actors, we particularly want to emphasize the importance of the high-level principles that companies should promote in their own operations and supply chains.
The list of resources on this page provides information on impacts that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on labor risks, sectors, and populations. We will be updating this list regularly.