Unfortunately, it is likely that we will soon be experiencing a full epidemic of the new Corona Virus or Covid-19. The full effects of this are yet to be seen but I want to provide you with our best guesses of what it will mean for you and what we are planning to ensure the impact is minimised.
Firstly, we want to ensure everyone’s safety, the virus is not usually serious in people of working age, but it can still be unpleasant even for those without underlying health conditions. As such we want to minimise your chances of catching the virus:
- You will be asked to declare you are free of symptoms and have not travelled from a list of affected countries. These countries include but are not limited to Italy, Iran, China and South Korea
- If you have symptoms you think may be Covid-19 and you have a relevant travel history or have been in close contact with a person suspected or diagnosed with Covid-19 you must quarantine yourself. You must then call 111 and speak to NHS Direct before telephoning your recruitment consultant.
- If asked to be quarantined by NHS direct we will pay you statutory sick pay, if you otherwise qualify under the usual rules, for the length of time your current assignment is scheduled.
- If you are not already registered with a doctor, we encourage you all to register urgently, if you do not know how to register or need some help please contact your consultant who will help.
- If you do have underlying health problems and consider yourself to be a vulnerable person, please listen to official advice and prepare to isolate yourself as per government advice. We will be unable to pay statutory sick pay for this, but you could consider using your holiday allowance for this period.
- Please distance yourself from your colleagues, do not shake hands, kiss, hug or share drinks and open food.
- Wash your hands before starting work and regularly throughout the day, which is easy in a food factory!
We are obviously unable to stop the progress of the epidemic but we have made plans to ensure that we continue to function as an agency so we can continue to offer work and pay you each week.
- Option A office staff will begin remote working soon to ensure that they do not infect each other.
- We are making arrangements with our customers to ensure that they continue to pay us so we can continue to pay you.
- We have made plans to ensure we have multiple staff able to process your wages to cover for sickness.
- At the peak of an epidemic even if all of our usual payroll staff are ill we will be able to pay estimated wages and correct it the following week.
- We have spoken with all of our customers to understand their plans to help us plan your work.
- Some of our usual clients may shut for some days but we will likely have extra vacancies with other customers, such as cleaning companies and those companies with high absence. As such don’t be surprised if your usual shifts and place of work are a little changed during the next 3 months.
- It is difficult to predict with 100% accuracy but we expect there will be plenty of hours available for those willing and able to work during the epidemic
- If public transport is affected, we have a large fleet of vehicles and should be able to arrange lifts or collections so please let us know if you have travel problems.
If you have any questions at all, please don’t hesitate to contact your consultant who will be happy to answer your queries. Also keep a close eye on this website and also the links below to keep up with the latest advice and information.
- Official information at https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-information-for-the-public
- Advice for staff and workers to follow https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/ and
- If you become unwell at work to follow the guidance at https://www.acas.org.uk/coronavirus.
- UK Government Covid 19 action Plan https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-action-plan