This is the last article you can read this month
You can read more article this month
You can read more articles this month
Sorry your limit is up for this month
THE government was accused today of “failing to get a grip” on Covid-19 safety in workplaces after figures showed office outbreaks have outnumbered those in supermarkets, restaurants, cafes and warehouses.
More than 60 suspected Covid-19 outbreaks were recorded in the first two weeks of January, despite a national lockdown, according Public Health England figures obtained by the BBC.
The figures also showed that there were more than 500 outbreaks or suspected outbreaks in offices in the second half of 2020 — more than in supermarkets, construction sites, warehouses, restaurants and cafes combined.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Everyone has the right to be safe at work. But Boris Johnson and his ministers have failed to get a grip on Covid-19 safety in workplaces.”
Labour said that “weak and outdated” workplace safety rules and “a lack of enforcement” have put workers and the general public at risk.
The shocking research comes as 86 per cent of staff at the Covid-19-affected DVLA site in Swansea said that they do not feel safe to go to work, according to a survey by public services union PCS.
More than 500 infections have been recorded at the site since the pandemic began.
In a testimony shared by PCS, an anonymous DVLA staff member said it was “impossible” for them to keep social distancing with over 2,000 people still working in the office.
“Every day I wake up for work feeling sick,” they said.
“My mental health has definitely suffered due to the fact that I am working in an unsafe environment.”
A government spokesperson said it is continuing to reinforce the stay at home message: “We need all employers to act responsibly and take every possible step to help their employees work from home."
A DVLA spokesperson said the department has accepted all recommendations from Public Health Wales and the local environmental health team to "ensure the safety of our staff."
“All staff in roles that enable them to work from home are doing so and have throughout, in line with current government advice," the DVLA said.
"However, in view of the essential nature of the public services we provide, some operational staff are required to be in the office where their role means they cannot work from home.”
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by joining the 501 club.
Just £5 a month gives you the opportunity to win one of 17 prizes, from £25 to the £501 jackpot.
By becoming a 501 Club member you are helping the Morning Star cover its printing, distribution and staff costs — help keep our paper thriving by joining!
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by become a member of the People’s Printing Press Society.
The Morning Star is a readers’ co-operative, which means you can become an owner of the paper too by buying shares in the society.
Shares are £10 each — though unlike capitalist firms, each shareholder has an equal say. Money from shares contributes directly to keep our paper thriving.
Some union branches have taken out shares of over £500 and individuals over £100.
You can’t buy a revolution, but you can help the only daily paper in Britain that’s fighting for one by donating to the Fighting Fund.
The Morning Star is unique, as a lone socialist voice in a sea of corporate media. We offer a platform for those who would otherwise never be listened to, coverage of stories that would otherwise be buried.
The rich don’t like us, and they don’t advertise with us, so we rely on you, our readers and friends. With a regular donation to our monthly Fighting Fund, we can continue to thumb our noses at the fat cats and tell truth to power.
Donate today and make a regular contribution.