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'Freedom day' plans must leave workers free to stay safe

05 Jul 2021
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Rather than pander to pandemic hawks, PM should make safety of workers and public a top priority, says GMB Union 

GMB Union has responded to the unlocking measures announced by the Prime Minister today. 

Gary Smith, GMB General Secretary, said: 

“Today’s announcement to throw covid caution to the wind is a political decision. 

“The UK has the unenviable status as one of Europe’s covid hotspots - with eight of Europe’s 10 highest infection rates in England and Scotland. 

The Government wants people to exercise judgement, but not employers exercising their legal duties by reducing the covid transmission risk to the lowest level possible. 

Gary Smith, GMB General Secretary

“Rather than pander to pandemic hawks in his party, the Prime Minister should make the safety of workers - and the general public - a top priority. 

“The use of masks should remain mandatory for the time being - ditching them flies in the face of the science and it’s a small sacrifice for the greater good that shouldn’t be beyond anyone.

“The Government wants people to exercise judgement, but not employers exercising their legal duties by reducing the covid transmission risk to the lowest level possible. 

“The Prime Minister’s so called ‘freedom day’ plans are not addressing the freedom of workers to be free from floating germs or from being safe at work.  

“It is difficult to see how making workers more scared to go into workplaces or putting them under greater risk of being ill is any sense a civil right that he should be thanked for. 

“This pandemic isn’t over and we can’t go back to business as usual.” 

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