New York, NY – District Council 9 is holding free on-site COVID-19 antibody testing for its members all this week (May 18-20).
The tests is being offered to DC9’s 11,000-plus members at its office in Long Island City, as the city moves to reopening the construction industry during the ongoing global COVID-19 pandemic. MagnaCare and BioReference Labs is administering the tests. DC 9 hopes that by providing free antibody testing, members will be prepared to safely return to job sites.
District Council 9 is a chapter of the International Union of Painters and Allied Trades, an organization of painters, decorators, wall coverers, drywall finishers, sign painters, metal polishers, bridge & structural steel painters, civil service painters, lead abatement workers, glaziers & architectural metal glassworkers, paint makers and allied trades.
According to the Center for Disease Control, antibody testing is critical to determining how much of the U.S. population has been infected with COVID-19, especially in cases where the infection presents few or no symptoms.
New York remains the epicenter of the COVID-19 pandemic in the United States. At the time of this writing, Reuters reports 356,628 confirmed coronavirus cases across the state with 28,302 fatalities, so far.
The DC 9 testing site is reportedly adhering to all social distancing standards set forth by New York State and the federal government.
DC 9 is also distributing cloth face masks to those who receive the test. The masks, according to the union, are meant for general uses, such as traveling to work. While on job sites, contractors are responsible for providing all workers with protective masks.
“Our members are some of the hardest working people in New York and nothing ever keeps them down,” DC 9 Business Manager/Secretary Treasurer Joseph Azzopardi said. “Although this pandemic has slowed us down, DC 9 will ensure that our members continue to be safe on the job as well as at home. Providing these antibody tests is just one step in doing that. We will continue to fight this pandemic together, and we will come out stronger on the other side. We would like to thank our partners at MagnaCare for helping us put this together.”
MagnaCare President of Labor and Chief Sales and Marketing Officer Michelle Zettergren said, “I am so proud of our successful partnership with DC 9 to quickly mobilize and offer this important on-site testing in preparation for DC 9 IUPAT members to return to work. Joe Azzopardi’s leadership and continued focus on the safety and well-being of his membership made this event possible.”