UK: bottom of the league for sick pay

Since the beginning of the pandemic most of the 34 countries in the OECD have expanded or initiated statutory paid sick leave and other forms of financial help. We need to make the arguments for most of these new arrangements to stay in place or be further improved. And we need to win the argumentsContinue reading “UK: bottom of the league for sick pay”

Official: lack of sick pay is costing lives!

On 3rd July an official government commissioned survey found that lack of sick pay and insecure work increase the risk of carehome residents contracting Coronavirus. The Vivaldi study1 looked at coronavirus (COVID-19) infections in 9,081 care homes providing care for dementia patients and the elderly in England. They found risk of infection was reduced byContinue reading “Official: lack of sick pay is costing lives!”

Progress so far with careworkers’ sick pay

Almost a third of COVID19 deaths, over 16,000 people, have occurred in carehomes. Careworkers are twice as likely to die of COVID19 than the general public. A little acknowledged but major factor in these carehome deaths is the low pay and insecure employment of careworkers. It is estimated that around 440,000 care workers have noContinue reading “Progress so far with careworkers’ sick pay”

Is “enhanced” SSP the answer?

After weeks of campaigning by frontline workers the TUC and Labour Party have now taken up the demand for decent sick pay for all. The TUC’s Frances O’Grady said: “We need a testing and tracing programme up as soon as possible. “But it will not be effective if workers are pushed into hardship when theyContinue reading “Is “enhanced” SSP the answer?”

Fatal flaw with Track and Trace

The government has today announced its new Track and Trace system. In addition to the current self-isolation advice for those with symptoms (7 days) and those who live with people with symptoms (14 days), the government has added a new requirement that anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has had aContinue reading “Fatal flaw with Track and Trace”

GMB survey highlights Scottish care worker fears

A GMB poll of care workers in the private sector in Scotland has found two-thirds are worried about testing positive for coronavirus because they cannot afford to take time off work (Glasgow Times, 18 May). In Scotland enhanced outbreak investigation is being undertaken in all care homes with positive cases. That involves testing of all residentsContinue reading “GMB survey highlights Scottish care worker fears”

Have careworkers just won full isolation pay?

On Wednesday 13th May, in response to the growing number of deaths in care homes, Boris Johnson announced a £600 million “infection control fund” for care homes. Two days later, the Department of Health and Social Care explained how the money is to be spent. Included in the measures, buried in the small print (paraContinue reading “Have careworkers just won full isolation pay?”

Deliveroo riders need PPE and adequate sick pay now!

The IWGB union have written to Will Shu, the boss of Deliveroo demanding the company improve their riders′ pay, provide adequate sick pay and PPE. The letter is signed by over 40 MPs. It highlights the terrible conditions of gig economy workers. Yet Deliveroo riders are providing an important service and will continue to doContinue reading “Deliveroo riders need PPE and adequate sick pay now!”

Vulnerable workers need more protection now, and in the weeks to come

In the week after applications for government′s Job Retention Scheme launched on 20 April, Citizens Advice gave one-to-one employment advice to almost 4,200 workers. An analysis of a randomised sample of a tenth of these cases showed: Over 70 per cent of those who were shielding or are at higher risk from coronavirus were notContinue reading “Vulnerable workers need more protection now, and in the weeks to come”

Bosses discriminate against pregnant workers — know your rights!

Some unscrupulous bosses are using the pandemic to discriminate against pregnant women. The BBC website (10.5.) reported one 16-week pregnant care assistant was ″given permission″ by her employer to stop work (in line with advice from her midwife) but was told this would either be unpaid leave, or she might get sick pay if sheContinue reading “Bosses discriminate against pregnant workers — know your rights!”