International IATSE President Matthew Loeb has formally offered the services of union members to speed up vaccination efforts.
In a letter addressed to President Joe Biden, Loeb proposed that union members work with the Federal Emergency Management Agency to build vaccination centers across the country. The letter, sent Monday, comes after President Biden released a plan to control the pandemic, which includes a call for institutions to work with the federal government to convert venues such as stadiums and conference centers.
IATSE members and contractors are available to pre-install lights, rigging and electricity for field hospitals designed by the Army Corps of Engineers, the letter reads. Local chapters across the country have also developed pre-designed rigs, which can be adapted by venue size and sent to locations across the country.
“The skills required to convert these facilities are not much different than those required to load in rock and roll concerts and other live events,” Loeb writes.
The union has a history of helping to prepare centers in times of disaster, including in April, when union members helped convert facilities into field hospitals.
“As you know, these workers have been unable to return to work due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but they stand ready to do their part when called upon,” the letter reads.