HYRUM, Utah (ABC4 News) -1.7 million dollars is being donated by JBS USA to the city of Hyrum, according to the spokesperson for JBS USA, this is not directly in response to the nearly 400 positive COVID–19 cases from nearly three months ago.
“They came to us a couple months ago and told us this that this was a possibility,” said Stephanie Miller, the Hyrum City Mayor.
When the outbreak struck, concerned employees contacted ABC4 News, stating they continued to work while infected with COVID-19.
“They’re scared to talk about it, they think they’re going to get fired,” said an anonymous employee of JBS in Hyrum.
JBS USA responded to ABC4 News stating sick employees were told to stay home and received short term disability pay for up to 26 weeks.
“They took it back, now we’re just getting paid like before,” said the employee.
JBS USA leaders say starting back in April, team members received multiple bonuses and pay increases, with another bonus coming in December.
“They told me what their plans were to help protect the people that were working there, they were way ahead of the game,” said Miller.
JBS USA is working with Hyrum City leaders to identify where the funds can best meet needs in the community due to food insecurity, community infrastructure and well-being and COVID-19 emergency response and relief efforts.
“They asked if we would give them some ideas of projects or something that they could do to make a difference in the community,” said Miller.
Where the money will go, has yet to be announced. Leaders say projects will be determined by the end of the year.
“We came up with a list, of different things, some of those things have to do with a park we’re finishing, there’s other things in town, they want something that their name could be seen on it,” said Miller.
The money comes with a $50 million national project started by JBS USA called JBS Hometown Strong, to protect employees and ensure job security amid the pandemic.
City leaders are asking for the community’s input and to send ideas to hometownstrong.jbssa.com