Community News

A message for Inspire members on dealing with Covid-19

Ann McEvoy

Dear Inspire Member

There has been a lot of focus in the media in regards to PPE.

I’m aware you have been receiving a daily newsletter with information and official guidance?  However, have you got the PPE which you should have? Are there any issues around being supplied/use of PPE?

Please see information on UNISON website  and  Govt website ,also see attachment.

In light of the COVID19 Pandemic people with certain health conditions have been advised to ‘shield’ for 12 weeks as they are more susceptible to serious complications if they catch the virus. This has led to uncertainty in how and what they will be paid and if they will be left in detriment. I am in communications with Inspire CEO Linda Gray as to a way forward and if ‘Furlough’ will/can be implemented in Inspire.

‘Furlough’ or ‘Job Retention Scheme’ is If you and your employer both agree, your employer might be able to keep you on the payroll if they’re unable to operate or have no work for you to do because of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Your employer could pay 80% of your regular wages through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, up to a monthly cap of £2,500. You’ll still be paid by your employer and pay taxes from your income. You cannot undertake work for your employer while on furlough.

This can be topped up by the employer by a further 20% to ensure there is not detriment to the employee however this is not mandatory. The Organisation receives the 80% from the Government and they also cover the employers National Insurance and minimum pension contribution. The minimum amount of time that a company can ‘furlough’ employees is 3 weeks.

Once I have clarity in regards to this matter I will let you know. Please see link for more information on ‘furlough’.

However, on a good note, I’m sure you will have seen in the media that UNISON have been lobbying the Government to get additional payment to those in the Care /Social Care Sector. The Scottish Living Wage is now due to increase by 3.33% to £9.30 and to be applied from April 2020. The Government have recommended that this should not be delayed being passed onto employees and have included additional payment to Local Authorities to take this forward. We await confirmation that this is filtered through to organisations as per Government recommendations.

Please contact me if you have any problems with PPE or any other issues at