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Employment Advice

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Employment Advice

Old 12th Sep 2020, 10:17
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2003
Location: New Forest
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Employment Advice

Need a bit of advice please ladies and gents.
I work for a local coach company as a driver. A few weeks ago we started a deep cleaning regime in the nights to clean and disinfect coaches that have been out that day. I was given this duty for virtually a month, whilst other drivers were only getting two or 3 nights tops.
I was recently offered a position with a local bus company (much closer to home for me) so after some deliberation decided to take it and handed my notice in last week. I'm now halfway through my notice period (2 weeks).
THis week I have been programmed for another week of cleaning/disinfecting (surprise surprise). I have already once raised concerns with my line manager over the way the work is being shared out. Also now given the rise in the virus, the fact the coaches are often going to places with a high incidence of cases, and that I have vulnerable people in my family, would it be unreasonable of me to walk now citing the above reasons? If I did this are they allowed to withold any wages already due (I'm not owed any holiday so can't use any more). I'm not salaried, only get paid for hours worked, so technically wouldn't owe them anything, however could they put the days I miss down as holiday then dedct that from my final wage?
Thanks in advance
AeroSpark is offline  
Old 12th Sep 2020, 11:15
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Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Just north of Chester, UK.
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They will have to pay you the wages already due and any holidays accrued but not taken in that time. If you don't turn up for the second half of your notice period they will simply not pay you for that period alone.
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Old 12th Sep 2020, 11:16
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Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: England
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I would have thought that the people who are actually driving the coaches come into closer contact with potentially infected people, and go to high risk areas, so they are at greater risk than those doing the cleaning. Also if the management are aware of your vulnerable relatives, they may actually be protecting you by giving you the cleaning work. Surely close contact with disinfectant is less hazardous tHan close contact wit the general public. If the management are not aware of your vulnerable relatives you have only yourself to blame.


Last edited by keith williams; 12th Sep 2020 at 11:29. Reason: Typo
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Old 12th Sep 2020, 11:20
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Join Date: Feb 2006
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Do you think they know you have vulnerable people at home, so are keeping you in the depot as opposed to having you out on the road transporting people in the high risk areas, thus trying to protect you,?

lol Keith, my thoughts entirely and you posted as I was typing. though not sure about your last line?
NutLoose is offline  
Old 12th Sep 2020, 11:25
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Thanks for the comments. Re the safety of the job i would argue that it is safer to be in one coach, socially distanced at the front away from any pas, than walking through and cleaning 20-30 coaches potentially covered in virus
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Old 12th Sep 2020, 12:02
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 5,221
I would just keep on working your notice. You won't get anything positive out of JB for a week.
Fareastdriver is offline  
Old 12th Sep 2020, 12:09
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Join Date: Oct 2002
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Originally Posted by AeroSpark View Post
Thanks for the comments. Re the safety of the job i would argue that it is safer to be in one coach, socially distanced at the front away from any pas, than walking through and cleaning 20-30 coaches potentially covered in virus
I think this may well have been the considered view back around April/May this year, when it was thought that spread from surface to hand to face was the dominant transmission path, but in the past few months it has become clear that droplet transmission through the air seems to be far and away the most significant transmission path for this particular virus. It's not as persistent on surfaces as at first thought, and seems not to remain viable for long on a surface under most normal conditions.

I believe that, whether by intent or by accident, your employers may well have acted in your favour by giving you the disinfection duties, as I strongly suspect that's a lot lower risk than driving the buses, even accepting that there is some distance from the driver to the passengers. If it were me, and I had the choice (for the same pay) then I'd volunteer to do the disinfection work all the time, and never drive.
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Old 13th Sep 2020, 05:39
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: USA
Posts: 580
The following has nothing to do with your employment situation, but:

Breathing contaminated air is a far greater risk factor than direct contact with contaminated surfaces, as long as you wash the gloves you are working with (view them as an outer layer of your skin) and above all, do not touch your face with your gloves.

When you have to clean the interior, open as many windows as you possibly can to get fresh air in there. The virus doesn't last forever, but an infected person exhales aerosols which contain active virus. Rebreathing this in concentrated form increases your chance of getting sick.

It is thought the the lower the dose of infectious particles floating about, the lower the chance of it making you sick. This is why outdoor events are far safer than indoor events, and masks, which reduce the spread, help a lot.

Eating in a restaurant, which lets you rebreath the air of those around you, increases your risk of catching Covid-19.


people who tested positive for COVID-19 were approximately twice as likely to have reported eating recently at a restaurant compared to people who tested negative, according to a new report released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.
visibility3miles is offline  
Old 13th Sep 2020, 05:45
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See and avoid
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P.S., Don't use denatured alcohol as a hand sanitizer or to clean contaminated surfaces, especially not in an enclosed space.

They typically use methanol to denature ethanol. Breathing too much methanol can poison you.
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Old 13th Sep 2020, 10:55
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Southampton
Posts: 772
I suspect that you need the money, so do what you have to do, work the week and get paid.

Once you have gone, they will find that they have a problem. But it won't be yours.

Enjoy your new job.
Saintsman is offline  
Old 13th Sep 2020, 22:06
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Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Kelowna Wine Country
Posts: 461
If I were still an employer I might not be too impressed with a new employee who left his old job and employer short for such a spat.
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Old 15th Sep 2020, 08:09
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 1,807
It's basic decency and good manners as well as basic law to work what you originally agreed to, i.e. you signed a contract, and in doing so, you agreed to a notice period.

If you just leave, you are breaking your contract and you can kiss goodbye to getting a reference to show a new employer. In fact you might not get a new job since your old employer will tell any new employer that you broke your contract.

Suck it up and do the work, (but take health precautions). We all have to, that's what life is, and the sign of a decent and reliable person is one who does the work and takes the rough with the smooth.
Uplinker is offline  
Old 15th Sep 2020, 20:38
  #13 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Cheltenham, UK
Posts: 135
Bear in mind if you're being asked to do jobs that others aren't (as frequently) and you're all originally employed on the same contracts then they have to be careful with constructive dismissal.
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