P&G made a difference during the pandemic

As the third-largest employer in the area, and the manufacturer of some of the most essential goods, Procter & Gamble (P&G) hustled to develop protocols to keep employees safe during the COVID-19 pandemic, ensuring production could carry on.

With toilet paper and paper towels flying off store shelves, manufacturing workers were adjusting to different work schedules, daily temperature checks and short-handed departments at times, due to workers in quarantine, while steadily meeting the demand for the supplies our communities and nation depended on.

With 1,200 employees and an additional 500 contractors and vendors going in and out of the Cape Girardeau plant on a weekly basis, keeping everyone protected continues to be a feat.

Several workers told the Southeast Missourian recently how P&G went "over and beyond" to be sure not only were they protected, but their families were as well.

The workers forged ahead, keeping the plant running at full capacity 24-hours a day and even during holidays. At Christmas, employees volunteered to work in order to have product for customers and consumers.

The plant even retrofitted equipment at the Baby Care facility to manufacture face masks, since the technology used to make diapers is similar to mask making. P&G donated masks to its employees and families, schools, hospitals and the community.

Not only did P&G donate masks and hand sanitizer produced at plants to the community, but as a supporter of the United Way both at the corporate and local levels, P&G annually donates about one-third of what the United Way of Southeast Missouri raises every year between company and employee contributions.

In 2020, P&G donated an extra $45,000 specifically for the United Way COVID Relief Fund, providing a "jump-start" for other donations that surpassed $73,000 said Elizabeth Shelton, executive director of United Way of Southeast Missouri. Those funds were used to secure a matching grant to help Southeast Missourians who have been financially impacted by the pandemic.

With Family Care plant manager Jack Geissinger at the wheel, expressing sentiments such as "We really try to help, first off, our employees to make sure we were safe, help their families and the community," Cape Girardeau will continue to be supported by the generosity of P&G.

Geissinger told the Southeast Missourian the workers take pride in making the supplies people need.

We take pride that P&G calls our community home, and applaud the workers and leadership for such dedication and service during challenging times.