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Union Demands Immediate Sick Pay For Outsourced Workers With Suspected COVID-19

Union Demands Immediate Sick Pay For NHS Workers With Suspected COVID-19
02 March 2020

If people feel forced to work in hospitals – or any other workplace – while ill, coronavirus will become a national health crisis, claims a union representing outsourced healthcare sector workers.

The GMB has demanded that NHS Trusts ensure cleaners, porters, security and catering staff get sick pay in suspected COVID-19 cases.

The majority of private companies providing NHS services do not offer to pay sick pay for the first three days. This means low paid workers might come in even when unwell.

The union is calling for trusts to guarantee that all outsourced staff – in the event of management suspecting a case of COVID-19 – are guaranteed no loss of pay, no detriment to their sickness and absence record and no loss of annual leave entitlement.


“Cleaners, porters and catering staff are putting their own health at risk to help contain coronavirus despite the fact that they don’t get paid if they go off sick."

–Lola McEvoy

Organiser, GMB London


Terrible risk


“People are being left with an awful choice to come into work when sick or lose their pay. It means workers are constantly coming into hospitals when ill," continued McEvoy.

“That’s a terrible risk to patient safety at the best of times – but in the face of the COVID-19 outbreak, it becomes a national crisis.

“NHS trusts must guarantee all staff – where outsourced or not – are given full sick pay in suspected coronavirus cases, just like directly employed NHS staff."

Picture: The GMB has said that outsourced workers should be paid from the first day of sickness in the event of suspected Covid-19.

Article written by Brian Shillibeer | Published 02 March 2020


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