Bill Gates: Provide Quarantine Pay

Bill Gates

Bill Gates is making a fortune from the labor of sanitation workers at Republic Services. As the corporation’s largest stockholder, he’ll earn a dividend of $176,260,080 in 2020. While Gates profits, Republic is putting workers in danger during COVID-19.

Watch our video, then sign the petition below from Demetrius Tart, a sanitation worker at Republic Services in Cumming, Georgia, to demand that Bill Gates use his power to protect sanitation workers and our families with clear policies, adequate PPE and guaranteed quarantine pay.


I work for Republic Services in Cumming, Georgia. Since the pandemic began, we’ve been asking the company for PPE, policies to prevent spread, and to guarantee quarantine pay so workers can stay home safely if they may be infected.

Republic refuses.

If workers are exposed, we’re supposed to stay home. But if a test comes back negative, Republic won’t pay us for the time we were isolating--even if the isolation was ordered by a doctor. Workers are forced to choose between coming to work and potentially spreading COVID, or staying home and potentially losing weeks of pay.

Frontline workers share small spaces in garbage trucks and processing facilities, and dispatchers work less than 3 feet apart in offices. But Republic won’t even tell us if someone we worked with has a suspected case so we can get tested ourselves. This is putting workers, our families and our communities in danger.

If you are exposed and do the responsible thing by staying home, the company requires two negative tests before you can return to work. Because of the lag time in tests, that could be as long as a month. If your tests are all negative, they deny sick pay.

It would only cost around $52 million for the company to guarantee two weeks of quarantine pay to every frontline worker this year. That’s less than one third of Gates’ personal dividend, and only 8.6 percent of the $600 million Republic is spending on stock buybacks in 2020.

Back in February, Gates said “we have no time to waste” fighting the virus. He needs to step up for the waste workers who help him rake in huge profits and use his power as Republic’s top shareholder to ensure we have PPE, quarantine pay and safe working conditions.

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To: Bill Gates
From: [Your Name]

Republic Services is putting sanitation workers in danger. As the company's largest shareholder, you have the power to protect them.

I'm signing this petition from Demetrius Tart, a Republic Worker in Cumming, Georgia. Please use your power and wealth to protect workers like Demetrius who are making you a fortune. We demand that Republic Services issue clear policies related to COVID-19, including guaranteeing quarantine pay for any worker who isolates due to possible infection, providing adequate PPE and social distancing for workers.