Mining considered essential during COVID-19

Mining operators are making more changes due to COVID 19. Mining operators are making more changes due to COVID 19. |  Photo: WDIO FILE

Updated: March 26, 2020 01:05 PM

The mining community continues to make changes due to COVID-19.


Because it's listed under "critical manufacturing" in Governor Tim Walz's Stay at Home order, mining will continue.

Here's the exact phrasing: Critical manufacturing. This category is limited to critical manufacturing workers listed in the CISA Guidance. This category includes iron ore mining and processing operations and supplier/vendor industries essential to such mining and processing operations.

Local 6115, which is the union that represents Minorca mine workers in Virginia, said that they are working with the company on things like shift change and lunch breaks, to keep people separated. Also, workers will be getting letters to keep in their vehicles, that indicate they are essential.

Over at U.S. Steel owned facilities, the unions have said they are using internal people to do some of their maintenance work, instead of outside contractors. This is to limit the number of additional people coming into the facility.

According to the Lake County Facebook page, North Shore Mining donated some masks this week to the jailers, rescue squad and deputies. Northshore is owned by Cleveland-Cliffs.

On Thursday, Cliffs announced they are donating $55,000 to food shelves in communities where the company operates.

Lourenco Goncalves, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer said, “We are sensitive to the fact that the coronavirus is impacting families and communities across the United States. During this time of rising need, Cleveland-Cliffs is supporting our local communities’ food banks as they are on the front-line distributing food and other essentials to families in need.”

Cleveland-Cliffs is collaborating with multiple food banks and food distribution organizations in over 15 cities across the states of Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.

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