Tesco defends itself against staff complaints after Eastbourne worker catches covid-19

Tesco has defended itself against staff concerns about safety measures after an Eastbourne worker caught covid-19.

Wednesday, 26th August 2020, 11:38 am
Updated Wednesday, 26th August 2020, 4:20 pm
Tesco, Lottbridge Drove, Eastbourne SUS-161214-145704001

The supermarket says customer and colleague safety is a ‘top priority’ after news circulated one of the Lottbridge Drove employees had tested positive with the virus.

However, since the Herald reported this on Wednesday (August 19), three members of staff have come forward with serious concerns about social distancing measures and cleanliness at the store.

One worker, who wished to remain anonymous, claimed staff who worked with the individual have not been encouraged to take covid-19 tests.

Instead, around 12 staff have taken tests individually, and are awaiting the results.

They also claimed there has been no deep cleaning at the Tesco Extra throughout the pandemic.

This has been alleged by another staff member who also wished to remain anonymous.

They raised concerns about cleanliness in the warehouse and said customer toilets are only cleaned once a day.

Staff work in close proximity with each other, they said, and it is not possible to socially distance.

A third staff member has also come forward.

They claim staff were not told about the worker with covid-19 for days.

They also say they have not been advised by management to get tested for the virus, despite working alongside this person.

Since the news about this individiual catching coronavirus, the staff member also claims there has been no increase in sanitation or deep cleaning.

“I have suffered a lot of emotional stress and anxiety from working at Tesco during this time,” they said.

A Tesco spokesperson, who was given the allegations in full, said, “The safety of our customers and colleagues is our top priority and has been throughout the pandemic. We have extensive measures across all of our stores to help keep everyone safe, including protective screens at every checkout, social distancing signage and regular deep cleaning.

“We are fully supporting one colleague at Eastbourne Extra who tested positive for Covid-19 in early August and they have followed all health guidance and track and trace requirements.

“We can confirm no other colleagues have subsequently tested positive for the virus.”

Pauline Foulkes, of Usdaw union, said, “Usdaw has been working with Tesco to agree extensive measures to keep our members safe including protective screens at every checkout, social distancing signage, enhanced cleaning routines and limiting the number of people in each store.

“We will continue to work with local management to ensure the correct measures remain in place.”

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