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Forced social care vaccinations 'more shoddy behaviour from government without trust of workforce'

23 Mar 2021
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Heavy handed, we-know-best approach will cause unnecessary anxiety and discontent when care workers are still fighting pandemic

GMB, the union for care workers, has responded to leaked papers suggesting the Government ‘has agreed” to change the law in England so social care workers are forced to get covid vaccines.

The union has repeatedly highlighted the barriers that need removing for care workers to get the vaccine, including the lack of full sick pay provision for potential side effects.

Kelly Andrews, Lead Social Care Officer said:

“GMB has encouraged members to get vaccinated against covid as soon as they can.

“We have repeatedly told Ministers we expect the Government to act so that no workers suffer a financial detriment as a result of getting the vaccine - especially those priority workers in social care and elsewhere.

This heavy handed, we-know-best approach will cause unnecessary anxiety and discontent when our care workers are still fighting the pandemic.

“Ministers have repeatedly refused to listen and talk now of imposing a blanket legal change forcing care workers to get vaccinated.

Kelly Andrews, Lead Social Care Officer

“This is more shoddy behaviour from a Government that have long lost the trust of the social care workforce.

“In the last twelve months since the first national lockdown, care workers have had to deal with the fallout from a litany of failures from the Government: the PPE scandal, the shifting of vulnerable hospital patients into care homes, the reams of conflicting guidance that government have put out.

care worker

“The least they could do through the vaccine rollout is try to gain the confidence of the workforce and work with us to remove the barriers to getting vaccinated. A voluntary line of action which ensures care workers get full sick pay for potential vaccination side effects, support services to talk through workers concerns.

“This heavy handed, we-know-best approach will cause unnecessary anxiety and discontent when our care workers are still fighting the pandemic.

“We need our care workers valued, recognised and rewarded - not strongarmed or bullied with threats of the law.”

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