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Job Centre workers challenge management over safety issues

The Workers Party of Britain deplores the pressure on Job Centre staff to return to work on unsafe sites and with unsafe working practices.

As the lockdown eases, the number of face-to-face interviews Job Centre workers are expected to carry out keeps going up, outpacing the ability of staff to work safely. Workers report individual caseloads way in excess of the recommended seven a day, making it impossible to clean up adequately between interviews and risking the health of staff and public alike. 

When workers show reluctance to return to work given these safety concerns, they are met with management bullying. This isn’t simply a case of local managers showing an excess of zeal: one manager had himself been threatened with disciplinary action if he failed to pressure his staff into returning to work, demonstrating that this culture of coercion is mainstream policy. 

Managers are putting pressure on workers to deal with the expanding workload by working excessive overtime, as long as 9 till 8 plus weekends, thereby increasing contact with the public and exhausting themselves.

Job Centre workers are currently balloting over this issue, and the Workers Party of Britain stands with all workers who refuse to work in an unsafe environment.

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