The Workers Union has urged the government to ‘order home working’ wherever possible now. The news comes as cases of Coronavirus continue to spike around the country.
Business leaders have suggested it will be impossible to allow people to continue to work in offices without an effective test and trace system, therefore the order to work from home must come from the government now and without delay. The director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, Adam Marshall said that a comprehensive test and trace programme ‘is essential’. Without it he argued, there could be ‘further lockdowns, which will cripple business.’
The comments arrive at a difficult time for the government. Recent lockdowns imposed on nearly 2 million people in the North East of England have rocked the plan to return to some semblance of normality. The news that 18,371 people tested positive for COVID-19 between the 2nd and 9th of September indicates the virus hasn’t gone anywhere. And the much-vaunted test and trace system seems doomed to failure.
The Workers Union Says
Throughout the pandemic, this government appears to have played fast and loose with people’s lives. First the lockdown- the last sensible measure – then a series of increasingly confused messages. Now we have a partial lockdown that prevents more than six people meeting. It’s difficult to believe that this is anything more than fag-packet policy making.
In the headlong rush to kickstart the economy, the government appeared to forget that COVID respects no borders. Infections can come from anywhere and spread fast. With proper messaging and clear-sighted commitment, it can be managed; but there’s been little co-ordination UK-wide.
It will be difficult to claw back control from here. But the order to work from home would be an important first step. This will show beleaguered workers that Whitehall is genuinely committed to employee safety. It will also publicly acknowledge that productivity is not just confined to the office.
The Workers Union – Britain’s hardest working union