Welcome for U-turn on ‘no jab, no job’ policy

The Independent Care Group today welcomed a U-turn on the ‘no jab, no job’ policy but want to know if those already sacked because of it can have their jobs back.

According to reports, the Government is to scrap the plan to make it compulsory for NHS and social care staff to have mandatory Covid-19 jabs.

It was due to come into effect in April for NHS staff and those providing social care in people’s own homes through homecare, with first injections needed this week.

The policy was introduced in care and nursing homes last November, causing thousands of staff to lose their jobs and preventing many thousands more from joining the sector.

The ICG has welcomed the U-turn but wants to know if those who lost their jobs in November will be able to return to work.

Chair Mike Padgham said: “We have always believed the vaccination was a good thing but should be a personal choice and that making it mandatory was going to rob social care of vital staff at a time when we need every team member available.

“We are glad that, finally, the Government is seeing sense and scrapping this damaging policy.

“There is little doubt that the introduction of the policy in November exacerbated the current staff shortages, already dire because of the pandemic and the impact of Brexit.

“This policy caused a lot of staffing issues for care and nursing home owners and upset and heartache for those who lost their jobs – we need to know now if they can have their jobs back.

“I think this illustrates the huge gap between NHS care and social care and the way they are treated. We were robbed of thousands of staff back in November when the policy came in for care and nursing home workers and nobody lifted a finger.

“But when a similar threat is levelled toward NHS staff, the policy is reversed. It is another in a long history of slaps in the face for social care, which, given the services it provides, should have the same respect as NHS care.

“This just shows that they don’t understand the difference between the NHS and social care sectors and that both need to be strong to support each other.”