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Contractors ignoring swine flu advice

Contractors ignoring swine flu advice
Contractors ignoring swine flu advice
Growing numbers of contractors are staying at work despite suspicions that they may be suffering from swine flu, potentially causing conflict with permanent staff and employers, according to a survey by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo) among its members. The problem is expected to peak later in the year when the annual flu season starts.

The survey of APSCo members showed that as a result of the recession contractors are increasingly keen not to take time off work when sick. This is because contractors only get paid for the hours they actually work. This trend is likely to cause animosity with permanent staff and employers during the swine flu pandemic.

Marilyn Davidson, Director of APSCo, comments: “Significant problems can arise if a sickness policy is ambiguous and a contractor with suspected swine flu stays onsite. This is something that is increasingly likely during the recession as contractors do not get sickness pay, so will be looking to maximise their income.”

“APSCo members have already reported several cases of contractors with suspected swine flu refusing to go home. Recruiters and end users need to update sickness policies now before the winter flu season begins.” She adds: “The combination of a pandemic and a recession is a recipe for trouble, potentially leading to contractors putting the health of core workforces at risk by attempting to avoid periods off work.”

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31 August 2009 

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