AUGUSTA — Maine’s attorney general has joined a group of 20 of his peers to call for the Trump administration to take steps to make sure meat and poultry processing facilities are safe for employees.

The attorneys general are responding to an April order by President Trump that was designed to keep the processing plants open amid the coronavirus outbreak.

The USDA said the order reflected the essential nature of the meat industry in the U.S.

Maine Attorney General Aaron Frey said he’s concerned the order didn’t protect workers who are now working in unsafe conditions.

He and the other attorneys general said the administration must take steps such as ensuring immediate access to personal protective equipment.

Frey and the group said they also want protections such as priority testing for workers in processing plants and isolation and quarantine with full pay for workers who test positive.

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