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Quarantine hotels: Health Secretary must give workers protection to avert fresh outbreaks

16 Feb 2021
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Ministers risk jeopardising the UK’s recovery from covid with new strains running riot through communities

GMB, the union for security staff, has written to the Health Secretary demanding workers at quarantine hotels have a thorough workplace testing regime in place and a guarantee of full pay for any period of self-isolation. 

In a letter to Matt Hancock, the union warns proper risk assessments must be carried out to avoid the recovery being ‘hampered by new variants spreading amongst the community’.

Quarantine hotels opened their doors to travellers from ‘red list’ countries today – but the GMB is yet to have assurances around thorough workplace testing, full pay for staff to self isolate or risk assessments to properly assess whether staff are working safely.   

A recent outbreak of covid in Victoria, Australia has been linked to a Quarantine Hotel.

Nadine Houghton, GMB National Officer, said: 

"We have seen clear examples from Australia's quarantine hotels where the virus has spread amongst guests and staff who have had no direct interaction with each other when doors into the hotel halls have been opened. 

“Without proper safeguards, Ministers risk jeopardising the UK’s recovery from covid with new strains running riot through communities.” 

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