Ruger’s 2020 investment to protect its staff and their families during the pandemic came to light during the company’s Feb. 18 quarterly earnings conference. Despite last year’s record-setting sales and increased production to meet that demand, the firm has not only remained steadfast in its health-safety measures, it’s added paid vacation time and a bonus to employees who receive a COVID-19 vaccine.
“Since its onset in March, we have remained proactive in maintaining the health and safety of our employees and mitigating its impact on our business by providing all hourly employees with an additional two weeks of paid time-off in 2020 and providing an additional week in 2021, encouraging employees to continue to work remotely wherever possible and maintaining social distancing throughout each manufacturing facility, including in every manufacturing cell,” Ruger President and CEO Christopher J. Killoy said in the call’s opening remarks.
He added policies are also in place for "confidentially communicating with and assisting employees with potential health issues through our dedicated facility nurses. Restricting visitor access to minimize the introduction of new people to the factory environment, implementing additional cleaning, sanitizing, and other health and safety processes, including improved ventilation to maintain a clean and safe workplace.
Providing all employees with multiple face mask coverings and other personal protective equipment and manning their use at all times in our facilities. Issuing periodic guidance and reminders to all associates, directly to their phones where possible, to encourage them to engage in safe and responsible behaviors, and manufacturing and donating personal protective equipment to local hospitals, healthcare facilities, and police and fire departments in our local communities.”
The total investment in the health and welfare of its team and community came in at $3.6 million for 2020. Part of the effort was funded by the roughly $2.9 million in savings Ruger realized by not attending many of the industry’s canceled trade shows.
“We estimate that Covid-related costs will total between $1.5 million and $3 million in 2021,” Killoy said. “Included in this estimate is a $200 bonus for every employee who receives a COVID vaccination.”
Since June the company has added 250 additional staff members to increase production.