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Can't work because of fears for elderly mother

(33 Posts)
Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 19:29:15

Until now we've had almost everyone working at home, which has been OK but we've only been able to provide a partial service. We're now planning to move to something closer to normal.

As part of that I've asked staff to declare if they are official shielding, included in the vulnerable group, living with someone shielding or if there are other things that will make it difficult to attend work.e.g childcare.

I'm now going through 150 responses and we will aim to leave people with concerns wfh as far as possible.

One has said he can't be in work because he lives with his elderly mother who he's very worried about. She's 50, which happens to be exactly my age and 2 years younger than his line manager! This is going to be fun grin

OP’s posts: |
NK346f2849X127d8bca260 Sun 24-May-20 19:35:52

Wonder what he would class me as then,am i classed as then, i was 57 recently and certainly dont feel elderly!

NK346f2849X127d8bca260 Sun 24-May-20 19:36:39

Should have read that before posting!

Clymene Sun 24-May-20 19:38:46

grin bloody hell, if she's elderly, we're all doomed gringringrin

Does he mean 'I'm enjoying sitting in my PJs all day and my mu brings me tea'?

HappyHammy Sun 24-May-20 19:39:11

Does she need looking after. Will you be asking for proof that staff have caring responsibilities

Bathbedandbeyond Sun 24-May-20 19:41:49

I don’t want to be working at the moment, I’m worried, but I’m a key worker and I’m working harder than ever. Nobody cares about how I feel grin

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 19:43:28

Most staff are more likely to be asked "are you sure?" because they're saying they're fine to work when we know they have conditions like asthma etc.

The officially shielded ones and ones who live with someone shielded have been asked to provide a copy of the letter. We will definitely be able to have those at home.

The others will be judged according to how easy it is to have them wfh, if not we will pay special attention to SD for them, but we can't ask for evidence, what evidence is there?

OP’s posts: |
ToffeeYoghurt Sun 24-May-20 19:44:35

Doesn't the age risk for Covid start to increase from 45? His concerns aren't wildly unreasonable given that.

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 19:44:38

The responses are quite telling and you could have predicted every one of them. Some people desperate to get back when they possibly shouldn't, others not so much.

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ToffeeYoghurt Sun 24-May-20 19:49:13

He's already back if he's wfh. That's still work. Plenty did it before the pandemic.
For now, the government is encouraging wfh wherever possible.
I suspect most people want to get back to work. It's just that many want the same simple measures taken to protect economy and lives that other countries took. We could've had that by now.

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 19:51:37

Yes, except it's not. We've called it wfh and they've been on full pay (public sector so no furlough) but very few have had a full days work to do because it's not possible, most have been doing very little.

OP’s posts: |
thatgingergirl Sun 24-May-20 19:53:19

ToffeeYoghurt - OP did say they've only been able to provide a partial service.

Toilenstripes Sun 24-May-20 19:58:03

She’s not elderly. If she has health issues that’s another issue entirely. How old is he? 😂

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 19:59:52

Yes I will have to ask if there are other concerns but he hasn't declared anything. He's late 20s

OP’s posts: |
ToffeeYoghurt Sun 24-May-20 20:01:30

If it's genuinely something he can't do from home, he could look at moving out if he's very concerned about his mother. Unless she has care needs (mental or physical), in which case his concerns are very understandable.

You say you'll take steps to make things safer in the office. I'd suggest mandatory masks for staff using public transport to get to work. With exceptions for anybody with a medical reason why they can't wear one.

You can see why your employee is worried about returning to work. Other countries have taken simple measures to make that safer. We haven't.

user1471453601 Sun 24-May-20 20:09:00

The whole "sheilding" thing is highly flawed though.

I'm 69, so not required to shield. I have moderate COPD, so not required to shield, I have mild asthma, so not required to shield. I had part of one lung removed, but it was ten years ago, so not required to shield. In the last four years, I've been hospitalised twice with chest infections.

So, my DD and her partner (we live in the same household), decided that if dd had to go to work, I would isolate within our home.

Luckily, she's able to wfh, so we haven't even had to go that far.

Just don't assume that it's ok for everyone who doesn't have an officially shielded person at home is in the same as another. Take every case on its merits. A pain im sure, but better than putting someone at risk

Bluetrews25 Sun 24-May-20 20:09:01

Ask to see a copy of his mum's shielding letter, just as you have done with the others - treat all staff the same.
Cheeky get.
Is his mum not working?
Can you do some facebook stalking? Look at her photos?

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 20:12:16

You must be in the vulnerable but not shielded group though user?

No, I'm sure it's not perfect. I'm also being told some staff have letters but their doctor says they don't need them, but it's all I have work with.

But yes, that's why we have given everyone the opportunity to tell us their concerns and we will do what we can to accommodate them.

OP’s posts: |
ToffeeYoghurt Sun 24-May-20 20:12:21

Agree with pp. The shielding list is very flawed. I'd urge you to include vulnerable but not shielded when considering staff requests for wfh. Many of the most vulnerable aren't included on the shielding list. Diabetes, for example. It's the highest mortality rate for Covid but not shielded.

Inoneminute Sun 24-May-20 20:14:00

We are considering vulnerable but not shielding for wfh, didn't I say that? It's a big group though and we have a public service to provide.

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Drivingdownthe101 Sun 24-May-20 20:17:07

I bet my 60 year old mother who is frontline NHS wishes she was considered elderly so she could stay at home!

Trevsadick Sun 24-May-20 20:19:15

We had this when we returned people.

A small, but substantial group claiming to be sheilding or living someone that is.

Our staff have medicals every year. The majority (of this group) claimed to have conditions the legally have to disclose, turns out they didnt. Or claimed to have someone sheilding living with them. The majority did not.

The people legitimately shieldingbhad already let us know before, as requested.

2 of the group that claimed to have elderly parents living with them. Had taken bereheavment leave for both parents in the last few years.

These people took up so much resources, at a difficult time, they have made themselves look terrible.

Thankfully, the majority were just sensible and came back to work aand embraced the changes.

ToffeeYoghurt Sun 24-May-20 20:20:52

I bet your frontline NHS mother is glad she's not currently overwhelmed with patients - young or old. Aside from the work pressure, her personal risk from even higher viral load would be so much worse.

Ginfordinner Sun 24-May-20 20:21:15

One has said he can't be in work because he lives with his elderly mother who he's very worried about. She's 50,

Is he a teenager still?
50 isn't elderly. If she has health concerns then that is a different matter, but there is no way she is elderly.

I'm 61 BTW and don't class myself as elderly.

Drivingdownthe101 Sun 24-May-20 20:25:19

ToffeeYoghurt of course, but I’m not sure what that has to do with the OP?
She’s had covid19 by the way. She’s fine, thank you for caring.

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