‘Urgent action needed to protect workers’ from Coronavirus, says IW Green Party

Vix Lowthion says it’s unreasonable for employees to choose between a job or the health of their family

factory worker

News shared from the Isle of Wight Green Party. Ed

Vix Lowthion, spokesperson for the Isle of Wight Green Party, says she has been inundated with families contacting her with their very real concerns about Island engineering and online fulfilment companies remaining open at this time of national crisis.

Workers report that the companies have taken few precautions to protect them from contracting the Coronavirus, and that their families are really worried for themselves, their children and family members who have underlying health conditions. They are scared to speak out publicly as they are worried about losing their jobs and their family’s only source of income.

Lowthion: This is not Business As Usual
Vix Lowthion has written to a number of the companies who have been brought to her attention – to date only receiving a reply from Pascal/ DDC Electronics.

Vix says,

“We are in a national crisis, with a threat to the lives of ordinary citizens not seen since the Second World War, with hundreds of people already dead. This is not Business As Usual.

“People are really worried about their health of themselves and their loved ones. Companies are responsible for the Health and Safety of their whole workforce, and it’s clear that too many of them have not made adequate precautions or supported the option for all of their employees to work from home.

“Urgent action is needed, before the threat to health from the virus escalates even further.”

Companies refusing furlough action
Some families report that whilst their loved one is pressurised to go to work in close proximity with other workers, that those on a higher pay grade have been allowed to stay home in safety. 

And that they have enquired about the government’s ‘furlough’ scheme to pay 80% of their wages so they can isolate at home, but that the companies have refused to join in that scheme and are insisting that the workers must go into work or lose their job.

Pressured into choosing between a job or health of families
Vix concluded,

“The government have been clear on enforcing closure of non-essential retail and high street shops. They must also be clear about the safety of workers away from the high street.

“It is unreasonable that the government has pressurised companies into forcing their employees to choose between a job or the health of their family.”

If you wish to disclose other concerns, in confidence, then please email [email protected]

Image: Spencer Davis under CC BY 2.0

Friday, 27th March, 2020 5:41pm


ShortURL: http://wig.ht/2nyD

Filed under: Business, Isle of Wight Jobs, Isle of Wight News, Top story

Any views or opinions presented in the comments below must comply with the Commenting 'House Rules' and are solely those of the author and do not represent those of OnTheWight.

Leave your Reply

9 Comments on "‘Urgent action needed to protect workers’ from Coronavirus, says IW Green Party"

newest oldest most voted
As many people as possible need to work. As long as they are not in the at risk part of the spectrum (70+, asthmatic etc) or are living with someone who is, the workforce should operate as best it can or we will end up in the economic dark ages. Greens solution will end in more economic hardship and viscous inflation. The money printing exercise currently underway… Read more »
Ms Lowthion, are you also advocating that power stations, offshore installations, gas reception terminals, electricity and gas transmission infrastructure, maintenance crews including the heroes who turn out in any weather and climb up dangerous poles and pylons damaged by wind and snow so you could your cup of coffee in the staff room. Also do you want to shut down MHI Vestas who produce wind turbines, these… Read more »
Steve Goodman
In your free time just now why not do an online Masters course in ecology in the real world? And economics. For a better understanding of what’s gone so wrong, why we are now at war with ourselves, why the con. government has had to do a previously unimaginable economic u-turn and is now having to act and spend more like totalitarian communists, and why there is… Read more »

The Government is offering big business loans. Loans have to be repaid, and will inevitable cripple or bankrupt many companies. These companies have taken the survival decision to stay open and force their employees to work, they done care for them, if they fall ill, or worse, then they are a replaceable commodity. It’s a commercial decision that doesn’t value an expendable resource.

This is just not a time for political point scoring. Boris Johnson, the Prime Minister, has contracted a life threatening illness whilst doing the job that he was elected to do, at a time when we are lucky enough to enjoy our lives in relative safety. I certainly don’t agree with everything he is implementing, but we are managing better than many others, and for those of… Read more »
Does it occur to you that if the lamentable johnson had followed his own advice with regard to social distancing he might not have caught the virus? The tories have spent the past 10 stripping the NHS of funds, staff and resource. They had two months to ensure that frontline NHS staff had adequate PPE. They have failed dismally, as newspaper reports show. When the government places… Read more »
Angela Hewitt

I am opposed to vigilante action and naming and shaming but in this instance when we are discussing unscrupulous companies and not individuals and considering the crisis that we are in name and shaming should be used to expose these companies. The press usually do it but seem to be wrapped up in other things right now.

Geoff Brodie

Well said. The silence from the local Labour Party and trade unions has been deafening.

Angela Hewitt

They are probably more worried about who your next fall guy is going to be. Although there is one candidate who might just win the election for you – it is not Keir Starmer