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“We are terrified for our safety. Terrified to share COVID-19, unknowingly, with an older employee, a pregnant coworker or anyone else who may have some sort of underlying condition,” the employee said. “We all knew it would come to this. It was only a matter of time.”
MLB is set to play a 60-game regular season beginning in late July. The season was delayed for four months by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Texas will be playing in brand-new Globe Life Field this year.
Per Passan, multiple employees said their managers told them working from home was not possible, though some were given exceptions. Over 100 people work in the Rangers’ executive offices, with over 200 in Globe Life Park regularly.
Employees said some people were not wearing masks inside. Furthermore, the stadium saw more foot traffic when it started hosting high school graduations in May.
According to Passan, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott recently said sports stadiums could host fans at 50 percent capacity, which caused some concern.
“With cases on the rise, how are we planning to have fans here, keeping in mind that we need to keep our staff and players safe and healthy?” an employee said. “What procedures will be in place if fans are allowed in here?”
As for what the team will do in the immediate future, Passan offered some insight.
“The Rangers will sanitize their offices over the weekend, offer coronavirus tests to employees Monday and Tuesday and could reassess their work-from-home policy in the days thereafter,” he wrote.
In a statement Friday, the Rangers acknowledged the positive tests and said they were committed to strictly enforcing safety protocols.
“The health and safety of our employees are a top priority, and the Rangers will continue to diligently enforce the pandemic protocols that are in place for front office employees at Globe Life Field. These include temperature checks upon entering the building, mandatory wearing of face coverings, and regular sanitation and cleaning of the Globe Life Field facilities.”
The state of Texas has seen a rise in cases of the coronavirus. On May 25, it had 440 new cases, per the New York Times. That number ballooned to 5,473 by June 25. There have been 142,399 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state, and 2,360 people have died.