Increase in cases linked to Don KR

Don KR’s Castlemaine factory remains temporarily closed with the company confirming six cases of coronavirus linked to the site as of yesterday.
“We have six employees from our Castlemaine production facility that have been confirmed to us as tested positive for COVID-19,” the company said in a statement provided to the Midland Express yesterday.
“The individuals are isolating at home and will continue to do so for a minimum of 14 days and until they have tested negative against COVID-19.
“Our first positive case was confirmed on Thursday July 23. We immediately deployed our response procedure, in collaboration with the Department of Health and Human Services Victoria.
“On Friday, working closely with DHHS, we temporarily closed the Castlemaine production facility to undergo a deep clean and we have now almost completed the testing of our entire 1300 workforce.
“The health and safety of DON Smallgoods staff is our priority and, as a responsible employer, we are taking all necessary steps to ensure we protect our workforce at this time.”
The statement said the Castlemaine production facility would be reopened when DHHS confirmed it was safe to do so.
“We anticipate that this will cause some disruption to the supply of some product lines,” the company said.
“We are keeping our customers and suppliers informed and will be making every effort to keep the disruption to a minimum.”
The company also confirmed it had received clearance from the Department of Health and Human Services Victoria to have a limited number of staff – “about 15 per cent of our workforce” – working at the facility on Friday until midnight, “to stabilise the plant as part of the temporary closure procedure”.
“During the site’s temporary closure, all employees will be paid as per their normal roster,” the company said.
The Department confirmed that testing for Don KR workers had been made available at the Bendigo Health and Maryborough District Health sites.
Pop-up testing was also conducted in Castlemaine at Don KR premises on Friday with a large number of workers lining Richards Road in their vehicles during the day as they waited to go through the process.
At the time of going to press yesterday, DHHS data showed just one active case in Mount Alexander Shire.
Six cases had also been linked to the Malmsbury Youth Justice Centre, with active cases for Macedon Ranges Shire sitting at 10.

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