Model letter for NHS staff

Dear [THE BOSS],

We are writing to raise an urgent concern the serious risk posed to frontline staff, patients and our infection control measures by insecure work and zero hours contracts.

We are writing to seek assurances that all workers operating in [TRUST NAME] premises will be entitled to full paid leave, where necessary, to comply with the government’s public health advice to self-isolate for the safety of others. This includes bank, agency, outsourced workers and sub-contractors. Without this assurance many of these workers, who are often some of the lowest paid, will be forced into an impossible situation. The government has pledged that some of these workers will receive Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) which is £94.25 a week. This is less than a third of the take home pay of a minimum wage worker.

If these workers develop symptoms of Coronavirus or a member of their family develop symptoms they will be faced with an impossible situation: either follow government advice to self-isolate and face very rapid and severe financial hardship, or continue to work and risk infecting colleagues and the patient population with this potentially deadly virus.

We have seen a letter dated 2.3.20 which you received from NHS England instructing the Trust to “Ensure that any member of staff, including bank staff and sub-contractors, who has to be physically present at an NHS facility to carry out their duties, receives full pay for any period in which they are required to self-isolate as a result of public health advice.” We would like to know what has been done to enact this instruction and communicate it to all workers working alongside us within the Trust.

Many workers in our buildings who ordinarily do not have rights to paid leave, may be unaware of the provision [IF YOU HAVE EXAMPLES PUT THEM HERE]. If workers do not know that they are entitled to paid time off then the risks we identified remain.

We are unsure whether steps have already been taken to this end. We hope that if the matter has not already been resolved that it is resolved rapidly. If there is no swift resolution, we will be taking advice and considering options for further action under health and safety legislation and according to our professional codes of conduct.

Yours sincerely,


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