Unite Scotland statement on maintaining COVID-19 restrictions and pressure to re-open Scottish economy.
Pat Rafferty, Unite Scottish Secretary, said:
“Unite Scotland fully supports the continuation of restrictions by the Scottish Government for companies and organisations to remain closed if they are deemed non-essential to the fight against COVID-19”
“While there is rightly an ongoing debate regarding re-opening the Scottish economy, and we must be planning for this eventuality, it should not come until the scientific and medical advice is clear that it is safe to do so.
“Workers should be under no pressure to return to work in Scotland even if the position differs in England because the law in Scotland is clear.”
“If people can work from home then they should and if they can’t then they should be furloughed under the UK Government’s coronavirus job retention scheme.
“Where this is possible companies and organisations should be paying the difference to ensure workers remain on full pay.
“There are no excuses or justifications for premature redundancy notices while the job retention scheme remains in place.
“It’s also vitally important that the UK Government maintains the current wage support levels for all workers and income support for those who are self-employed.”
“The priority should remain fixed on ensuring that those essential workers combatting this pandemic and those keeping the country running get the necessary personal protective equipment, testing and tracing, while adhering to social distancing measures.
“The message is simple: stay at home, protect the NHS and save lives.”