Amanda Lathia provided insight on returning to work during the pandemic in The Sun’s Snapchat edition.
Please find Amanda’s full comments below:
“Employers should be conducting anonymous surveys to ascertain the proportions of their workforce that are prepared to return to the office; prefer to work from home; or e.g. want to return to a back office role rather than customer facing. Employee worries may arise in any field from science and pharmaceutical roles to teachers to bar and cafe workers.
There will equally be employees who are willing or even keen to get back to work. Employers should be listening to any concerns and adapting their workforce and work practices as far as possible such as deep cleaning daily, reducing/eliminating access to certain work areas, reducing time spent in the physical work space, setting up rotas, providing visors/screens for customer-facing roles.
“Employees should feel able to speak directly with their boss if their employer has been proactive in hearing their concerns and provide alternative suggestions to how they could work more safely. While businesses have been grappling with difficult cash flow problems, they may not have had time to think through the practical issues of returning to work. In the alternative, employees should approach the HR manager.
“For employees who are vulnerable, e.g. have an underlying condition or live someone who is vulnerable, they should not be forced to return to work. The Health and Safety legislation still applies and no employee should be forced to take unnecessary risks. Instead talk through how the employee could work or be redeployed and as a last resort look at redundancy.”