Our COVID-19 Response

A Letter from our CEO 

As I write this note, it has been several weeks since the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic, putting businesses around the world, including ours, in a state of uncertainty. The theme for our annual townhall this past September was “We’re All in This Together.” At that time, we had no idea just how significant our theme would prove to be in the coming months.

We have had to navigate a situation we could never have foreseen. From the shutdown of major construction sites to needing to find ways to safely continue operations in our plants, this pandemic has put our business to the test. We’ve had to act thoughtfully and quickly, in the best interests of our clients and suppliers, our people, and their families.

Unfortunately, nobody can predict when this situation will end or the long-term impacts it will have on businesses. We are 100% committed to working with our clients through the challenges to help them continue to be successful.

This situation has provided the ultimate opportunity to put our core values to the test, and I am proud to say that I’m seeing them being lived out every day. Our people are passionate, experienced and committed to always finding a way to get the job done.

We have a reputation in the industry for following through on what we say we are going to do. We are trying our best to honour our commitments to our clients under the challenging circumstances, and remaining open and transparent along the way.

We are putting the health and safety of our people at the forefront of everything we do and we are collectively doing what we can to support the frontline workers who are working tirelessly to support the most vulnerable in our community.

Below are some of the things that we are doing to enhance safety, ensure continuity of our operations, and support the community through our Values in Action program.

I am feeling hopeful as governments are starting to discuss how to safely re-open the economy. I want to thank everyone who has been working together and showing such kindness and grace in the face of adversity.

I encourage you to stay strong, caring, patient, and vigilant as well we look forward to brighter days ahead.

Peter Kranendonk, CEO

Committed to Health and Safety First

  • The Health and Safety of our employees is our top priority. Our seasoned management team and newly formed COVID-19 response team are meeting regularly and closely following the recommendations of Canadian and World Health organizations.
  • We have instituted rigorous precautions to help keep our people safe and healthy while continuing operations including social and physical distancing practices in all our plants and on worksites to ensure the safety of our team and continuity of operations. Dedicated workstations and iPads for plant employees enable collaboration and communication while reducing contact.

Committed to Stability and Business Continuity

  • Being deemed an essential provider, our production has continued in all four of our Canadian plants and our two US plants. Our weekly tonnage has only been slightly reduced as we have adapted to COVID-19. We anticipate getting back to our average tonnage for our plants in the coming weeks.
  • The automation and robotics in our Dartnall Plant enables us to minimize touchpoints which reduces physical contact with materials and between people. This allows us to continue operations even in the event of reduced manpower.
  • Our mobile and cloud-based technologies allow us to ensure business continuity regardless of physical location. Those working remotely and at the office while physical distancing are all connected. Through virtualization technology, our employees can work from any device to get to their Walters desktop.

Committed to Supporting Our Communities

Through our Values in Action program, Walters has set a provisional budget to support healthcare and essential workers. Our Chairman, Walter Koppelaar, is leading the coordination and planning efforts with Hamilton Health Sciences, the YWCA and Brant Community Healthcare System to partner with local caterers to safely deliver lunches to frontline workers on a weekly basis.

We’re hoping to engage other businesses to join in our efforts to expand the impact of the #freelunchforfrontlines initiative to create a movement of caring.

If your company is interested in participating, please reach out to info@waltergroupinc.com.

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