J.D. Scholten, a Democratic congressional candidate in Iowa, called it a “travesty” Monday that meatpacking workers in the state haven’t had access to proper personal protective equipment (PPE) during the coronavirus pandemic.
Scholten told Hill.TV that meatpacking plants’ setup allows for them to become hotbeds for the virus as employees “work in very close proximities.”
The Iowan cited a piece written by journalist Art Cullen who called the meatpacking workers “patriots” amid the U.S. outbreak.
“They were going in when everyone else was able to stay home,” Scholten said.
“What we saw was they didn’t have the PPEs. They didn’t have the protection they needed, and it’s just a travesty,” he added.
Scholten is running to take Rep. Steve King’s (R) seat in Iowa’s fourth congressional district.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released data on Friday finding that more than 4,900 meat processing workers had tested positive for coronavirus.