The meat processing facility at the centre of a Melbourne coronavirus outbreak organised an indoor staff meeting for 350 workers two days after the facility was ordered to shut.
Melbourne abattoir Cedar Meats invited its workers to an all staff meeting on May 1, two days after being ordered to close down by the Health Department, according to a report from The Age.
The facility at Brooklyn, in Melbourne’s west, was closed because dozens of the workers tested positive for COVID-19. The meeting, attended by about 260 staff members, included information on how to practice social distancing, self-isolate and get tested for the virus.
The company said attending the meeting wasn’t mandatory and if staff felt attending was unsafe they didn’t have to come along. The company insisted physical distancing guidelines were observed during the meeting according to the report.
One attendee who didn’t want to be named claimed groups were “bunched up” at the meeting according to The Age.
In the days since then, from May 4 to May 8 more than 60 more cases of the virus have been recorded.
A total of 88 people linked to Cedar Meats have now been diagnosed with coronavirus.
Of those, 17 new cases were reported on Tuesday. No new cases were reported today.
The new outbreak has become the largest outbreak in the state so far and has caused Victoria’s coronavirus numbers to grow, as numbers in other states remain low.
Some of those infected cannot self-isolate at home and have been staying in hotels in Melbourne including the Rydges in Swanston St, according to reports.