Royal Mail Group Offices – Staying Covid-19 Secure & Safe – RMG/CWU/Unite Agreed ‘Resetting Covid-19
1 March 2021
Our Ref: E1/21
To: All Branches
Royal Mail Group Offices – Staying Covid-19 Secure & Safe – RMG/CWU/Unite Agreed ‘Resetting Covid-19/Coronavirus Control Standards Poster’:
Throughout the Covid-19/Coronavirus pandemic, the Health, Safety & Environment Department has continually had to raise issues of poor compliance with the ‘Covid Secure’ safety standards (“Hands-Face-Space-Cleaning”) escalated to us by ASRs. Additionally, the enforcing authorities, HSE and Local Authority EHOs have carried out proactive ‘spot-check’ inspections from which they have identified poor ‘Covid Secure’ safety compliance, issuing subsequent warning letters and fee for intervention notices on Royal Mail and Parcelforce.
The ‘Resetting The Covid-19 Safety Compliance Standards Poster’ and initiative is aimed at avoiding community transmission of Covid-19 spreading into Royal Mail and Parcelforce Workplaces. As agreed with Royal Mail and Parcelforce – the role of CWU ASRs and WSRs is a crucial part of this initiative and drive.
Following discussions with Royal Mail and the Royal Mail Group SHE Team, the attached poster was constructed for issue to all offices and units across Royal Mail and Parcelforce in order to reset and reinforce Covid-19/Coronavirus safety control standards by communicating the message and standards in a concise, visual way, supported by an agreed programme of joint ‘Covid-Safety’ health and safety inspections involving ASRs, Operational Managers and SHE Advisors, plus managers have been instructed that they MUST carry out ‘mandatory’ weekly Covid safety SMAT checks.
In line with the recent joint Royal Mail Group/CWU communication issued on 26 January 2021 and Joint Statement issued on 9 November 2020 (See LTBs 029/21 and 544/20) regarding the agreed ‘Mandatory’ wearing of face masks and coverings, Royal Mail Group, the CWU and Unite/CMA want to take the opportunity to reset the vitally important safety standards and to increase the level of personal responsibility by all in the workforce to get involved in making their contribution to assist in preventing the spread of the Covid-19/Coronavirus into Royal Mail and Parcelforce workplaces.
The Government/HSE’s own ‘Staying COVID-19 Secure’ poster (see attached) was designed and is required to be displayed in all workplaces in order that employers can, in conjunction with Trade Union Health and Safety Reps, confirm they have complied with the Government’s guidance on managing the risk of COVID-19 through 5 steps to safer working and for the employer to confirm they have carried out a COVID-19 risk assessment and shared the results with the workforce and the Safety Reps, and to confirm that they have cleaning, handwashing and hygiene procedures in line with guidance, plus that they have taken all reasonable steps to help people work safely from a COVID-19 Secure workplace, and that they have taken all reasonable steps to maintain a 2m distance in the workplace or at least a 1m plus distance with all the mitigating actions possible to manage transmission risk.
The new joint RMG/CWU/Unite Poster (see attached) was developed with the co-operation and involvement of the Royal Mail Group Safety, Health & Environment Team, Royal Mail, Parcelforce and the CWU National Health, Safety & Environment Department and Unite/CMA.
The Poster covers:
NHS Test & Trace Self-Isolation Notification
Hand Washing and Sanitising
Cleaning the Work Station and Touch Points
Management ‘Mandatory’ Covid SMATs
Joint Safety Rep/Management Covid Safety Inspections
Monitoring the Cleaning of Touchpoints; IPS/Prep Frames, Work Equipment – Desks, Phones, Keyboards and Scanning Equipment etc., Machines and vehicles.
ASRs are asked to proactively get involved in these inspections and in promoting the messages of compliance in the agreed poster, closely monitoring compliance issues covered in the poster and recording and completing Safety Inspection Reports. Also, please identify the worst offices and flag these up to the Regional Heads of SHE – Emma Tranter (North) and Jayne Callaghan-Jarvis (South).
RMG/CWU/Unite ‘Resetting Covid-19/Coronavirus Control Standards’ Poster
Government – ‘Staying Covid-19 Secure’ Poster
National Health, Safety & Environment Officer