WASHINGTON – The United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), representing 1.3 million meatpacking, grocery and other front-line workers, applauded President Biden’s new vaccine tax credits for small businesses. The tax credits will provide businesses the ability to provide paid time off to those getting a COVID-19 vaccine. The UFCW and the White House both called on all front-line employers to guarantee paid leave for their essential workers to get the vaccine.

“President Biden’s vaccine tax credits for small businesses are a critical step to ensure more of America’s essential workers can get the vaccine without losing a paycheck,” said Marc Perrone, UFCW international president.

Perrone continued, “America’s frontline essential workers in grocery stores and meatpacking plants continue to face some of the highest risks of COVID exposure, and the need to strengthen vaccine access has never been more urgent. But too many states are failing to ensure essential food workers have vaccine access as they continue to face barriers with the vaccine eligibility pool expanding.

“As the union for essential food workers across the country, UFCW is joining President Biden in calling on all CEOs to guarantee paid leave for their frontline employees to get the vaccine. To keep our food supply secure as the pandemic continues, we need action now from every frontline business to eliminate the hurdles these workers face to getting vaccinated.”

Top meatpackers such as JBS USA, Pilgrim’s Pride and Tyson Foods, and grocers including Aldi, Kroger, Lidl, Publix, Target and Trader Joe’s, already pay their employees to get vaccinated. In addition, UFCW has helped to establish on-site vaccinations at locations for Tyson Foods, Cargill, National Beef, Albertsons grocery stores, CVS pharmacies and other food and retail companies across the country.