By Benno Dorer, Chair & CEO, The Clorox Company
COVID-19 continues to bring difficult and sometimes life-threatening challenges every day. What we are experiencing globally and here in the U.S. is unprecedented. In the midst of all this uncertainty, we are seeing the best of people — their courage, their commitment, their kindness. Public health caregivers are working tirelessly on the front lines. People are banding together to take care of each other, especially the most vulnerable.
But they need support, and that’s where we all can help. Our internal compass at Clorox always guides us to our most important value as a company. Do the Right Thing. Our mission as a health and wellness company has never been clearer. Since our founding in 1913, we have helped communities in times of global health crises and natural disasters. In this uncharted territory we know that it is important to act quickly to help. Back in early January, we activated our teams across the company to guide our response to increase supply to protect public health and people. I’d like to share three priorities for us.
- Maximizing supply to get our products where they are needed
- Protecting the health, safety and well-being of our employees
- Supporting caregivers on the front lines of fighting coronavirus
Maximizing supply as a company with essential products
People are asking for our products at extraordinary levels. This is especially true of our disinfecting products. We acknowledge that we aren’t consistently in stock given the significantly increased demand. But we are working around the clock, including running our disinfecting and cleaning plants 24/7 to maximize supply, and working with our supply chain to make more products. This will help us get our products where they’re needed most — healthcare facilities and to the public. In some cases, that means making changes, including focusing on manufacturing disinfecting products that can be supplied most quickly with a lens toward the products most in need, in turn increasing output. In other cases, it means directing more disinfecting products to healthcare facilities, especially acute care, and people in need. We are working tirelessly with our suppliers and retailers to make this happen, and appreciate their exceptional partnership. We are also grateful when people buy only what they need.
In the U.S., The Clorox Company operates in what has been identified in guidance issued by the federal government as critical infrastructure sectors. As a part of that, our people qualify as essential critical infrastructure workers who support public health and safety, as well as community well-being, because we make disinfectants and other essential household products. This gives us confidence that our U.S. operations will continue during the COVID-19 pandemic, so we can manufacture and distribute our products to healthcare providers, retail outlets, such as groceries and pharmacies, as well as other businesses.
Our commitment to supporting the safety & well-being of our employees
At Clorox, we care deeply about safety and well-being for our global workforce of 8,800 people and their families, as well as for our communities around the world. As we operate 24/7 to get essential products to our communities, we recognize that our front-line teams making and shipping these products are the lifeblood of our company. And we have their backs. To support their safety, we’ve enhanced our infection prevention measures, including rolling out the implementation of temperature scans conducted by trained third-parties; staggering meals and breaks; and following physical distancing practices. This is on top of increasing our disinfecting and hygiene protocols at all our facilities. We’re showing our appreciation to this dedicated production team in a variety of ways, including enhanced pay and incentives.
For our broader global team, in addition to enhanced benefits, including greater flexibility around sick-pay and work hours, we’ve established an initial $1 million Employee Emergency Relief Fund to provide coronavirus-related support for Clorox employees.
$5 Million to Care for Caregivers Bravely Fighting Coronavirus
One of the most effective things we can do right now is support those on the front lines of public health. Recently, The Clorox Company Foundation announced a sweeping series of grants to three organizations on the forefront of coronavirus relief. We are donating $5 million to Direct Relief, Centers for Disease Control’s Foundation Emergency Response Fund and the American Red Cross.
Clorox’s mission is to make everyday life better, every day. We fulfill this mission by caring for people communities and employees in ways that we’re uniquely capable of. It is a time for action: to support caregivers who care for us when we need it most, and people in need. We will get through this because we’ll do it together.