NWRA sent a letter to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) urging the agency to accept the recommendation of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). The ACIP recommended that essential workers, as identified by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), should receive a COVID-19 vaccine after healthcare workers. Waste collection workers are classified as essential workers.
“We applaud the hard work of the CDC, the ACIP and all the men and women dedicated to ensuring that Americans have access to a safe and effective vaccine,” said NWRA President and CEO Darrell Smith. “I am pleased that DHS and ACIP recognize the important work our members do to protect public health. NWRA has made every effort to provide the necessary resources so that the waste and recycling industry can continue to operate safely during the COVID-19 pandemic.”
During this national emergency, at the request of NWRA, DHS’s Cybersecurity Infrastructure Security Administration classified waste collection workers as “essential” under five different “Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers” categories. Waste and Recycling workers were placed on the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine’s COVID-19 vaccine priority list in response to a request from the Association.