Workers cheered as they enter Sioux Falls pork plant

Sioux Falls resident Pat Lloyd, right, waves to greet employees of a Smithfield pork processing plant as they begin their shift on Wednesday, May 20, 2020, in Sioux Falls, S.D. Smithfield called many employees back to work after it closed the plant for more than three weeks because of a coronavirus outbreak that infected over 800 employees. (AP Photo/Stephen Groves)

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) - Employees at the Smithfield Foods pork processing plant in Sioux Falls, where a coronavirus outbreak infected over 800 people, saw something new as they showed up to work.

They were greeted Wednesday by nearly a dozen Sioux Falls residents with thank you signs, cheers and waves.

The event was organized by a group of friends who wanted to give meatpacking workers a show of support similar to what health care workers have received during the pandemic.

Smithfield has instructed many workers to return to work this week as it looks to scale up operations by the end of the month.

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