Statement Dr. Holger Engelmann, Chairman of the Management Board, Webasto SE
Over the past year the coronavirus pandemic has placed huge limitations on the societal, social and economic life of every individual. When we at Webasto became the first company in Germany to be confronted with the novel virus exactly twelve months ago, I could never have imagined the extent to which the virus would spread globally. After the initial shock we were able to break the chain of infection by taking courageous decisions, implementing consistent measures and the support of our employees.
One year later we are in a completely different situation. The coronavirus determines our daily activities and, at Webasto too, there have unfortunately been positive tests among our workforce time and again – particularly in Europe and the US. As far as we know, the majority of employees become infected in their private environments. So far, we have the occurrence of infection at the company under good control. With the help of all employees and the approval of those infected, we are continuing to announce their names internally in order to be able to identify other potential contacts as quickly as possible. Travel restrictions and comprehensive hygiene concepts apply worldwide. Moreover, the managers of our more than 50 sites are implementing additional appropriate health protection measures in accordance with the requirements of the respective countries and the local situation at Webasto. For instance, these may include temperature measurements in production or liberal home office working rules for office staff.
Employees’ health always had – and still takes – top priority at Webasto. We are seeing how the pandemic is putting society worldwide to the test, and sometimes countries are taking drastic measures to stop the spread of infection. Test, trace and limit contacts. I think this is the right approach – and it is important because the virus is life-threatening. Protective measures do not cause uncertainty, quite the opposite: They provide safety. Even though I may not agree with every political decision taken during the coronavirus crisis, I still have no sympathy with those who question all of the measures and fail to comply with the respective guidelines. We will only overcome the pandemic by being consistent, considerate and having solidarity. Until we are able to achieve a broad level of vaccine protection for the population, everyone must make his or her contribution to contact tracing. I therefore urge more people to use the Corona-Warn-App in Germany. I am going to get vaccinated as soon as I am able, in order to protect myself and others, and I also ask all of my employees to do the same.
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