My name is Erika Yalowitz, a member of the American Federation of State County & Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and frontline public employee serving as a juvenile court intake officer and probation counselor. I take a deep sense of pride in being there for my clients at some of the most difficult times of their lives, and having the chance to support children at risk and survivors of domestic violence.
I balance my work in public service with being a wife and a mother to my school-age child. As a parent, like many of my co-workers, I am concerned about the risk of exposure and bringing this virus home to our families.
We need VOSH to make the emergency temporary standard permanent to protect employees against the risk of exposure, have one set of requirements that employers must comply with, and protections for all employees. We need strong enforcement mechanisms so that employers take these standards seriously.
Thank you for making Virginia the first in the nation to enact these temporary emergency standards and I urge you to protect Virginian workers and our families.