Author Bio ▼

Barbour EHS is an online subscription service providing access to essential legislation, guidance and practical tools to help keep you compliant.
June 5, 2020

Get the SHP newsletter

Daily health and safety news, job alerts and resources

Coronavirus

Coronavirus: Which key workers are most at risk?

The coronavirus pandemic has different impacts on different groups of workers. For workers defined by the Government as ‘key workers’ the health risk is heightened. 

coronavirus key workerThis Insight, published by the House of Commons Library, outlines which workers have experienced the biggest health risk, and breaks these groups down by ethnicity, gender, country of birth, disability status, household type, and rates of pay.

The article says that key workers are more likely than average to be from a BAME background, be women, be born outside the UK, and be paid less than the average UK income.

According to the Office for National Statistics’ interpretation of Government guidance, in 2019, a third of the workforce were in key worker occupations and industries.

Of key workers:

  • 14% are from BAME (Black, Asian, Minority Ethnic) backgrounds (4% are Black, 7% Asian, 1% Mixed, and 2% ‘Other’), compared to a workforce average of 12%;
  • 58% are women, compared to a workforce average of 48%;
  • 15% are disabled (as defined by the Equality Act 2010), compared to a workforce average of 14%;
  • 18% are born outside of the UK, compared to a workforce average of 11%.

Workers in occupations with the highest number of COVID-19 deaths – such as care workers, taxi and cab drivers, security guards, and sales and retail assistants – are also more likely to come from a BAME background, be women, and have lower than average rates of pay.

According to the ONS, within the 19 individual occupations with the highest number of COVID-19 related deaths, 1,088 workers aged 20-64 died in England and Wales between 9 March and 20 April 2020.

Analysis of the Labour Force Survey shows that of the workers in the occupations:

  • 13% are from BAME backgrounds, compared to a workforce average of 12%;
  • 55% are women, compared to a 48% workforce average;
  • 15% are disabled (as defined by the Equality Act 2010), compared to a 14% workforce average.

Read more here.

Sleep and Fatigue: Director’s Briefing

Fatigue is common amongst the population, but particularly among those working abnormal hours, and can arise from excessive working time or poorly designed shift patterns. It is also related to workload, in that workers are more easily fatigued if their work is machine-paced, complex or monotonous.

This free director’s briefing contains:

  • Key points;
  • Recommendations for employers;
  • Case law;
  • Legal duties.
Barbour EHS

Related Topics

Subscribe
Notify of
guest
0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments