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Wales TUC – don’t forget workers’ health and safety as we reopen economy
Wales TUC yesterday renewed its call for workers’ health and safety to be at the centre of plans to reopen the Welsh economy.
This call comes following a Welsh Government press conference in which Eluned Morgan MS , Minister for International Relations and the Welsh Language, announced that rules designed to keep people safe will be enforced by the police. She also clarified that businesses flouting the rules could be forced to close.
Wales TUC General Secretary Shavanah Taj yesterday welcomed Welsh Government’s announcement but raises concerns about workers in the hospitality sector being put at risk:
“We strongly welcome Welsh Government’s cautious approach to easing lockdown and reopening sectors such as indoor hospitality, something we have previously called for to be done safely. We are concerned that as we reopen, some employers may ignore or place less emphasis on the health and safety of their staff.
“We are glad that Welsh Government shares our concern for worker safety. Unfortunately, Ministers cannot always rely on employers to do the right thing, so we are encouraged by Welsh Government’s tough stance on bad bosses.”
The Minister referenced the intelligence gathered by the Wales TUC through its health and safety whistleblowing form, promising to act on the information provided.
Shavanah Taj yesterday welcomed this promise on behalf of the trade union movement in Wales.
“Workers’ health matters more than profit. Trade unions’ work with Welsh Government is key to understanding where employers are not complying with guidance and are putting workers, and the public, at risk.
“Our confidential whistleblowing form has already received hundreds of responses since the start of lockdown, from people working across Wales in many different industries.
“It’s important that people know their rights at work, and our website (www.tuc.org.uk/wales) holds a wealth of accessible information, including how to find the right trade union for you. We encourage anyone concerned about their health and safety to speak to their trade union or fill in our anonymous whistleblowing form.”
Wales TUC’s form can be found at www.tuc.org.uk/news/covid-19-health-and-safety-concerns-work.
All information will be anonymously shared with Welsh Government and the Health & Safety Executive (HSE). Respondents do not need to be members of a trade union; they just need to be working in Wales.
Wales TUC is the voice of Wales at work. With 48 member unions, Wales TUC represents just over 400,000 workers. We campaign for a fair deal at work and for social justice at home and abroad.
On 31 July Wales TUC responded to Welsh Government’s plans to reopen the indoor hospitality industry https://www.tuc.org.uk/news/wales-tuc-welcomes-reopening-indoor-hospita….
The Wales TUC website includes more information on Health and Safety during Coronavirus:
- Covid-19 - Coronavirus advice for workers in Wales
- Covid-19 equality guides
- Returning to Safe Workplaces in Wales
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