The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has been criticised by the House of Lords for failing to clarify whether thousands of carers who were sacked for not getting a Covid vaccine can have their jobs back and whether ‘no jab, no job’ for new health and social care recruits is being sneaked in by the back door. MailOnline has more.
The House of Secondary Legislation Scrutiny Committee has said there are still “a lot of loose ends that must be addressed”.
Up to 40,000 workers were effectively fired when the highly controversial “no jab, no job” policy was introduced in November.
Health chiefs then U-turned on the legislation, which was also going to be placed on NHS workers from April 1st. Hospital staff weren’t affected by the mandate because it had yet to come into force, but care homes had already been forced to get rid of any unjabbed carers.
Industry bosses warned it was too late because many wouldn’t bother coming back to the hugely understaffed sector, which was already short of 100,000 carers before Covid struck.
Baroness Bakewell of Hardington Mandeville, one of the committee’s members, praised the DHSC for the information and scientific evidence behind the decision to revoke the jab mandate policies. But she said: “There are issues that still give cause for concern.”
In a memorandum provided to the committee, the DHSC said it is “engaging with the NHS” to review recruitment policy to consider “vaccination status” when hiring new staff.
Baroness Bakewell said that any such move “needs proper evaluation in light of the pandemic experience”. And she said it was “disappointing” that the DHSC remained silent on whether sacked staff can or should be reinstated. The DHSC said that the matter of rehiring staff was to be decided by “each individual employer”.
Why is the Government not making clear that now we are ‘living with Covid’ there is no place for excluding people from health and social care work due to their vaccination status? Ministers must ensure ‘no jab, no job’ is not being brought in by stealth, as it is unnecessary and detrimental to the sector.
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