Care home staff are being left with no protective equipment and told to self-isolate at WORK if they test positive for coronavirus – leaving them with huge childcare and financial problems
- GMB Union claimed care workers not being given proper protection equipment
- Many have also reportedly been left without childcare outside of school hours
- Union has called for full pay for all social care workers who are in self-isolation
- Coronavirus symptoms: what are they and should you see a doctor?
Care home staff are being told to self-isolate at work if they test positive for the deadly coronavirus, a union has claimed.
The GMB claimed many care workers were not being given proper personal protection equipment (PPE), leaving them vulnerable to falling ill with the virus which has infected more than 9,500 people in the UK.
Many carers have also been left without any childcare outside of school hours because of the unsociable hours they work, the union added.
The GMB called for full pay for all social care workers in self-isolation and for the Government to underwrite any employers who cannot afford it.
A woman in a face mask walks across Westminster Bridge in London today after Prime Minister Boris Johnson put the UK in lockdown to help curb the spread of the coronavirus
Carers should also be given paid time off to look after their children when there is no other option available, and be supplied with gloves, masks, and sanitiser, said the union.
GMB official Kelly Andrews said: ‘Our care system is in danger of total collapse during the coronavirus crisis.
‘Our carers are distraught that they have to work with little or no PPE and, horrifyingly, are being told that if a resident tests positive then they cannot return home.
‘Despite being on the frontline, and utterly vital to stop our society from crumbling, they are on minimum wage, with unpaid breaks and are unable to rely on schools for childcare.
A London bus driver wearing a face masks adjusts his sunglasses on Westminster Bridge in London amid the UK’s coronavirus lockdown
Care home staff are being told to self-isolate at work if they test positive for the deadly coronavirus, the GMB union has claimed (Pictured: A man on the Tube today)
‘To rub salt in the wound, if they become ill they either have to try and support their families on poverty sick pay, or turn up to work ill, which could be a death sentence for residents.’
Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: ‘Care workers are an absolutely essential part of the response to this pandemic and councils want to continue supporting them in every way possible.
‘We take very seriously the concerns raised and are working closely with government and care providers to resolve these, including about distribution of PPE and making sure this gets to those who need it as soon as possible.’
Coronavirus has infected more than 9,500 people across Britain, with some 465 deaths confirmed as a result of the virus.
Among those infected is Prince Charles, 71, who has a ‘mild’ form of the illness and is currently on the Balmoral estate with his wife Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall.
The GMB claimed many care workers were not being given proper personal protection equipment (PPE), leaving them vulnerable to falling ill with the virus (Pictured: A couple in Hyde Park today)
The duchess, 72, has tested negative for COVID-19 and is without any symptoms of the virus.
A royal source said Charles’ doctor’s most conservative estimate was that the prince was contagious on March 13 – 24 hours after ‘briefly’ meeting his 93-year-old mother the Queen.
The Queen and Prince Philip, 98, had already travelled to Windsor Castle before the announcement from Clarence House today, after moving to the royal estate last Thursday.