According to a range of sources who work for some of the UK’s well known supermarkets, job cuts and tight rotas mean they have been ordered to turn up to work just hours after they have suffered sickness and diarrhoea.
The Food Standard Agency claims that people who work around open food while suffering
from these symptoms can contaminate the food or surfaces the food may come into contact with.
It advises that this can spread infection to other people through the food and tells business managers that they should encourage their staff to report their report these symptoms to management immediately.
Managers are also told to exclude staff with these symptoms from working with or around open food, normally for 48 hours from when symptoms stop naturally.
However it seems some supermarkets aren’t taking heed of these rules, rushing staff into work hours after they have called in sick or forcing them to come in despite claims of nausea and stomach upsets.
“I called my line manager to tell her I was feeling sick and feared it was the norovirus as my daughter had it the day before,” one checkout staffer told ChannelEye.
“However, I was ordered to go in. On my way in I was sick so called up again but was told to turn up anyway and see if my symptoms continued. By the time I turned up I was so unwell they took one look at me and sent me home. However, I’d already been inside the store and warehouse by then.”
Another added that staff cuts meant supermarkets weren’t following the correct procedures, telling ChannelEye, “I’ve been at the same store for 15 years and back then we had to take the correct 48 hours off and at times get a doctor’s letter to say we were fit for work. Now we’re expected to go back the day after.
“We just don’t have the staff to cover us for sick days off.”