Heroes on the Front Lines: Robert Nader

Making protective face shields

UAW Local 245 member Robert Nader gets antsy sitting still. Instead of going stir-crazy, he signed up for a job that would keep him busy and hopefully save lives. He is making face shields to help fight the spread of the devastating COVID-19 virus.

“It’s not just me. It’s a lot of different people in here coming together to help,” said Nader. “The medical community really needs these masks and other personal protection equipment right now.”

Nader, who normally handles die repair, now spends 12 hours a day at Ford subsidiary Troy Design & Manufacturing Company in Plymouth, Michigan.

He is now helping to produce transparent full-face shields for medical workers and first responders. The shields fully block the face and eyes from accidental contact with liquids and when paired with N95 respirators can be a more effective way to limit potential exposure to coronavirus than N95 respirators alone.

“I think helping out is a good thing and it keeps your mind off what’s going on,” said Nader, who has friends who have tested positive but survived COVID-19. “It was pretty touch-and-go there for a while, but thankfully, they made it through.

“COVID-19 is pretty nasty,” said Nader, who has been a UAW member since 1999. “I know not everyone wants to sign up for this. I get that. The best thing everyone can do is just take care of themselves so we can stop the spread of this virus.”