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'Some are very sick': 4 confirmed COVID-19 cases at Rumford mill

"Some are very sick," Judilee Whittemore, the USW Local 900 Union's recording secretary, said in a Facebook post Monday.
Mill in Rumford

RUMFORD, Maine — United Steelworkers Local 900 Union President Gary Hemmingway confirmed to NEWS CENTER Maine Tuesday that there are positive COVID-19 cases among people associated with the Rumford mill.

Hemmingway told NEWS CENTER Maine that five people have tested positive, however Maine CDC Director Dr. Nirav Shah said Tuesday that four people associated with the mill have tested positive. 

Maine CDC is working with the mill to test all employees.

Maine CDC is working to figure out if the work site is where transmission occurred or if transmission occurred elsewhere.

"Some are very sick," Judilee Whittemore, the union's recording secretary, said in a Facebook post Monday.

"If you have any symptoms at all please do not go to work!!!! Do not lie and say you’re ok! That does not help anyone!!stay home and call the HR department," Whittemore said in the post. "Also wearing a mask is not optional!! It’s mandatory or you’re not getting in! They have worded some already n sent one person home as well. If you don’t believe in masks or Covid, then that’s your opinion but while you’re at work you need to think of others safety and just do the right thing!!"

NEWS CENTER Maine reached out to ND Paper, which owns the pulp and paper mill, but have not yet heard back.

NEWS CENTER Maine will continue to update this story as more information becomes available.