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Correspondence With Simon Thompson CEO Royal Mail Group – Health, Safety and Wellbeing in Royal Mail

No. 133/2022

23 March 2022

Our Ref: C1/22

To: All Branches

Dear Colleagues,

Correspondence With Simon Thompson CEO Royal Mail Group – Health, Safety and Wellbeing in Royal Mail Group Going Forward in 2022 and onwards – Post Pandemic:

For your information, see attached exchange of correspondence with the Royal Mail Group CEO Simon Thompson and the newly appointed Interim Global Safety Director Phillip Graham regarding Health and Safety in Royal Mail Group going forward in 2022 as the business and nation emerges from two years of the Covid-19 pandemic. The correspondence follows up discussions that have been taking place with RMG Directors at the weekly RMG/CWU National Joint Coronavirus Operations Group meetings and separate discussions with RMG Property and Facilities Solutions Directors Martin Gafsen and Stuart Davies.

We have re-emphasised strongly the points repeatedly made during the pandemic and that is that RMG must learn the lessons of the last 2 years of the pandemic and make some positive, permanent changes to the following:

Improve RMG Buildings Ventilation

Dealing with indoor air pollution, improving air quality and filtration, deal with airborne viruses, germs, dust and particles. Install CO2 Monitors to measure air quality.

Improve Cleaning Standards

Providing a better, cleaner, healthier workplace environment as well as promoting a healthy workplace and culture.

Improved Workspace

Facilitate a safe workplace, well-maintained equipment, with no obstructions in floors and traffic routes, windows kept cleaned, the right number of toilets and washbasins cleaned and maintained, drinking water and having somewhere to rest and eat meals. A healthy working environment, clean workplace with a reasonable working temperature, suitable lighting and the right amount of workspace and seating.

Accommodation Replacements and Uplifts

Expediting over 239 Delivery Offices that have been identified as needing action by way of uplifts or replacement.

Mental Health, Stress and Anxiety

RMG need to pay attention to the growing mental health, work stress and anxiety problems that existed before the pandemic which have worsened during it. RMG need to take cognisance of the Government (Department for Work and Pensions) sponsored independent ‘Thriving at Work’ report, the independent review of mental health at work by Lord Dennis Stevenson and Paul Farmer which sets out what employers can do to better support all employees with mental health problems.

Reinstate Safety as No1

Because Safety isn’t Number 1 right now! The Royal Mail Group Safety Health and Environment (SHE) Team have been cut, cut and cut again since 2012. The 17 strong Integrated, Safety Audit has just been abolished. Cutting costs in this way leads to cutting corners and there’s too much corner cutting in RMG. Proactive management of safety and health in the workplace helps prevent accidents, injuries and ill-health but a well-resourced safety team is needed to achieve that goal by achieving compliance.

Good health and safety risk control systems, standards, policies, plans and procedures alone are not worth the paper they are written on if they are ignored. RMG has a legal and moral obligation to comply with the law and keep the workforce safe. RMG need to improve workplace safety culture, boost morale and generate a better understanding of dealing with safety hazards and risks in order to fully implement a health and safety system that can keep the workforce safe and reduce accidents and ill health.

See attached:

  • Letter to the RMG Chief Executive Officer dated 9 March 2022.

  • Reply on behalf of the Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer by the new Interim Global Safety Director dated 22 March with attachments on RMG First Class support, RMG Mental Health Support and RMG Health and Wellbeing Support.

Yours sincerely

Dave Joyce National Health, Safety & Environment Officer

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