Over 600,000 shielding workers ‘may be put at risk’ tomorrow as the govt lifts restrictions on workplaces

Clinically vulnerable workers will no longer be 'shielded' as from tomorrow.

31 Jul 2020| News

Around 627,000 working people have been classified by the government as being of clinical vulnerability to the Coronavirus due to underlying health conditions. From tomorrow (01 August), government guidance allows for them to be called back into work.

Despite the last-minute announcement of a major lockdown across a wide area of the North West last night, the government is going ahead with plans to ‘pause’ the shielding of clinically vulnerable workers in England.

The TUC has warned employers not to take this as an opprtunity to call individuals back into the workplace if there is a risk to their health and safety by doing so.

It is also calling on the government to extend the Job Retention Scheme to continue protecting the most vulnerable workers beyond October.

“It would be heartless and reckless for employers to demand the immediate return of shielding workers,” Frances O’Grady, General Secretary of the TUC, said.

“We all want people to return to workplaces as soon as possible. But the virus remains a threat to shielding workers … The government must make clear to employers that they cannot give shielding workers unreasonable ultimatums to return to workplaces.”