DHL has been told it ‘must improve’ coronavirus safety procedures for drivers working on its Jaguar Land Rover (JLR) contract in Halewood, Liverpool, Unite, the UK’s leading union, said today (Thursday 10 December). 

Unite, which represents the majority of the 120 DHL drivers at the Halewood site, said staff have raised concerns that vehicles used by drivers who had subsequently tested positive for the virus were not being disinfected.

When Unite health and safety reps brought workers’ concerns to the attention of the company, DHL dismissed the issue and accused the stewards of being on a ‘witch hunt’.

Unite slammed DHL for disregarding a ‘potentially serious infection control issue’ flagged by its staff and said the company’s response indicates that Unite stewards risk being unfairly targeted for performing their roles. 

Unite national officer Matt Draper said: DHL are operating the SWIS method of safety… Safety When It Suits. A potentially serious infection control issue has been flagged, but instead of listening to the concerns of their staff, DHL have accused Unite health and safety representatives of being on a ‘witch hunt’.

“This incident comes at the same time as DHL drivers on the Burton Biscuits and AB World Foods delivery contract prepare to strike over worker victimisation and poverty pay.

"DHL must improve Covid safety procedures for its Halewood drivers. That starts with taking their concerns seriously and meaningfully engaging with Unite’s well trained health and safety reps rather than intimating that they will face repercussions if they speak out again."

ENDS

Notes to editors: 

UK braced for Wagon Wheel, Jammie Dodger and curry shortage as Liverpool DHL workers take strike action

During the coronavirus crisis Unite is working to keep workers and the public safe, to defend jobs and to protect incomes.

For media enquires ONLY contact Unite communications officer Ryan Fletcher on 07849 090215.

Email: ryan.fletcher@unitetheunion.org

Twitter: @unitetheunion Facebook: unitetheunion1 Instagram: unitetheunion Web: unitetheunion.org 

Unite is Britain and Ireland’s largest union with members working across all sectors of the economy. The general secretary is Len McCluskey.