We are currently going through a crisis that will change the world as we know it forever. A lot has changed: Some people have lost their jobs and others are working dangerously close to COVID-19. Currently many people only see the essential workers as the healthcare workers, truck drivers and grocery store workers. Yes, that is true. But many people forget about the workers whose work is so essential that there would not even be hospital buildings without them. They are the union workers, the men and women who build these buildings in the first place.
My father Ben Fuller (Local 1181) is one of them; he works proudly for Flooring System Inc. (FSI). He does floor covering such as tile and carpet. He started laying tile after he graduated high school so he could provide for himself and future family.
Then COVID-19 happened, and the increasing demand for more hospital rooms has brought my dad dangerously close to COVID-19. So close, in fact, he was only one hospital door away from COVID-19. This has created a lot of mixed emotions about what is happening. My mom and I were so grateful that his job is essential. It was like a weight off our chest, but at the same time terrifying because he is so close to this dangerous disease. I believe that the essential workers such as my father should be recognized for their work.
All essential workers in this current time of crisis should be recognized for their efforts in protecting people from the virus, even if that means contracting it themselves. The union represents hard work, unity and strength—and I believe our country could use some of that in this current crisis.
Whether you are a carpenter, welder, tile- layer or other construction worker, I would like to thank you for the sacrifices you and your families are making to help this country in a time of need.
Shealynn Myers, 17, Ozark, MO