Stop demonising employers!!! They are real people trying to run a business to support their families, and yours.
I get that you’re scared of the Coronavirus and that’s a valid fear. I know you don’t want to catch it, or your family to do so or pass it on to others. Employers don’t want that either. We can’t just keep hiding from this virus and we need to find a way to get back to work, whether that is from home or in an alternative, controlled way.
I appreciate that we need to think about your mental health and ease you back to work on a phased basis but please think about the mental health of your employer who has been trying to keep things together for the past few months and has probably not been able to furlough themselves.
There is no definitive rule book that applies to everyone working through this pandemic. Whatever the government advise, they are not going to please everyone and cover every circumstance. The same goes for your employers. They will do their best to follow government, WHO, PHE and HSE guidelines and the mountain of professional advice out there (even if it is just because they are scared that you are going to report or sue them) but you, the working population of the UK, need to play your part too. You are adults and need to work with your employers, not against them, to define the details and make it workable for businesses.
Just because the Job Retention Scheme is in place until 30th October, doesn’t mean that you are entitled to be furloughed until that date. You’re not!
We’re already hearing of too many cases of employees refusing to come off furlough; you can’t refuse! Your employer designates you as furloughed or not and if they notify you that they want you to come back to work and you can’t or won’t do that, then they need to work out whether you are requesting unpaid leave, holiday, parental leave, isolating, off sick, shielding, or AWOL.
You must realise that, if your employer needs you to work and not enough people step forward to fulfil that need, that is going to have an impact on the business that you work for and may result in a reduction in overheads, including staffing.
We’re in this together and unless we support our employers now, there will ultimately be a heavier burden on the State as businesses fold or make difficult choices and people are redundant.