On 27th March, Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC), NHS England and NHS Improvement, Public Health England (PHE), Health Education England and NHS Employers put out a joint statement: “It is essential for infection control purposes that staff members who are told to self-isolate, do so as quickly as possible. NHS England and NHS Improvement wrote to chief executives on 2 March 2020, stating staff should receive full pay whilst in self-isolation. This includes bank staff and sub-contractors, who have to be physically present at an NHS facility to carry out their duties.”

If this is what top NHS bosses are saying about infection control in their workplaces – surely the same must go for your workplace.

It is very important to drum this into every employer’s head: workers’ rights are key to safety.

If you and your colleagues don’t all have equal rights to full isolation pay – you can tell your employer that the NHS takes the view that full isolation pay for everyone on site is essential for infection control… And they should know!

Any serious attempt to slow the spread of the virus must rely on workers being free to follow public health advice without suffering financial detriment. This applies not only in the NHS but in all sectors of the essential workforce.