As COVID-19 deaths rise in Mexico, US tries to force Mexican factories to continue to work in defiance of common sense.

One maquiladora factory has seen 18 deaths.

"There is something more important than life" one US executive claimed. (he was referring to profit!)

Democracy Now has been covering this issue for months.

It should not be required for people to work unless its possible for workers to work safely, and until the safety measures like social distancing has been universally enforced for at least two weeks and the deaths have clearly been falling for a bare minimum of two weeks. (really, both those periods should be longer both because the incubation period in some cases has been longer and also, maybe 10% of hospitalized patients so likely some other people have remained shedding virus and perhaps contagious for a month or more.) 

Its my understanding that many Mexican (and some US) factories are overcrowded and cannot operate safely under social distancing constraints.

That is why many Chinese factories were kept closed, they were not designed to be safe. When they re-opened it was with a lower density of people. They also checked workers temperatures when they arrived at work and gave them PPE because it was hard for them to find on their own at that point in China. It was in very short supply.

Wherever they are, if there is a COVID-19 problem in that area, factories should never be operated under unsafe crowded conditions, and when they reopen it should certainly not be without appropriate PPE and not until after all the other possible possible precautions (adequate fresh air ventilation) have been taken and after that the number of deaths has been falling for at least a few weeks. Workers should receive hazard pay if they are asked to work. And they should be well insured.

Otherwise if owners got a free pass to ignore common sense safety rules, all this social distancing all these months of effort we have put in, all we all have done will be wasted.