I wanted to provide an update today on the Group’s continuing response to the national effort to stem the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The safety and health of all our staff has remained paramount over the last few weeks and this continues to be the main focus for the Group as our understanding of the pandemic continues to grow.

We are keeping abreast of developments through continual review of COVID-19 guidance and existing health and safety law, but I am pleased to report that we are ready to implement our plans for the regeneration and normalisation phase of our business recovery.

With this in mind, over the coming weeks there will be a carefully planned, phased return to work for those currently working from home, or furloughed.

Nothing will happen immediately. We need to carefully study the details of the Prime Minister’s plan which he outlined on Sunday night, the details of which have been published this afternoon, with more advice for employers due to follow.

We are acutely aware of the sensitivities a return to work may cause, but there will be strict and robust social distancing and hygiene measures in place before anything happens to ensure staff safety.

A return to work video is being produced that staff will view prior to entering the workplace.

The film will take you, step by step, through the added safety aspects in force under the ‘new normal’ restrictions as the Government eases lockdown measures.

All decisions are being taken in complete adherence to guidance from Public Health England (PHE) and Government so that front line service delivery continues with the correct control measures in place to protect staff, while providing enhanced operational capability.

Everyone should continue to follow the hygiene regimes introduced by the Government and to follow self-isolation advice should you, or a member of your household, start to experience any COVID-19 symptoms

As we continue to be a more distanced, isolated workforce, it is also important that we look after our own, our families’ and our colleagues’ mental health. Please continue to text and call friends and family.

I hope this reassurance is helpful. The SHEQ department remains fully operational and is available to answer questions you may have regarding COVID-19, as well as routine questions.

Stay Alert, Control the Virus and Save Lives.

Jamie McDonald
SHEQ Director