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Can my boss make me go back to work from July 19

REQUIREMENTS to work from home due to the coronavirus pandemic are set to be scrapped as Freedom Day approaches.

Coronavirus restrictions are being removed from July 19 after Prime Minister Boris Johnson went ahead of step four of the easing of lockdown.

Workers are no longer required to work from home after Freedom Day


Workers are no longer required to work from home after Freedom DayCredit: Alamy

This means nightclubs can reopen and pubs can return to serving you at the bar on Freedom Day without any social distancing rules.

It also means workers are no longer required to work from home.

But coronavirus infections are still rising, especially amid the Delta variant.

We run through the key questions below if you are nervous about returning to the office.

Do I have to return to work?

The government is no longer instructing people to work from home from Monday July 19.

Employers have been told to plan for a gradual return to the workplace.

Its guidance said: “During this period of high prevalence, the government expects and recommends a gradual return over the summer.

“You should discuss a return to the workplace with workers, and trade unions to make working arrangements that meet both business and individual needs.”

Bosses have been told to listen to workers’ needs, particularly those who haven’t had both jabs.

Yeing-Lang Chong, partner at Springhouse Employment Solicitors, said: “Employees will have to go to work if asked to do so by their boss.

“If you refuse to go in without a justifiable reason, especially if the workplace has adequate anti-Covid measures in place, then an employer could take action in relation to your employment.”

Do I have to wear a mask at work?

Legal requirements to wear a mask indoors have been dropped but the government has suggested workplaces continue to follow this and also install protective screens to minimise risk of infection.

The guidance said: “The government expects and recommends that people continue to wear face coverings in crowded, enclosed spaces.

“Where worn correctly, this may reduce the risk of transmission to themselves and others. Be aware that workers may choose to wear a face covering in the workplace.”

Can my boss sack me if I don’t got back to work?

IF you refuse to go back into work and you don’t have reasonable grounds for doing so, such as a health reason, your employer can sack you.

But if you’ve worked for your employer for two years or more you may, however, have grounds to take your company to an employment tribunal if you think you’ve been unfairly dismissed.

Equally, if you think you’ve been dismissed because of discriminatory reasons, such as your age, race, gender or because of a disability, then you may have grounds for a discrimination claim.

It is automatically unfair to be dismissed because you took action about a health and safety issue.

It’s worth pointing out that being dismissed is different to being made redundant. You can be sacked or made redundant even while on furlough.

See Citizens Advice or speak to your trade union representative for more information.

If you don’t want to wear a mask, Ms Chong suggests talking with your employer to explain your reasons.

She added: “There are some exemptions such as for a disability and there could be discussions about alternatives such as a face shield.

“An employer could take action though if you refuse outright to wear a mask.”

What if my workplace feels unsafe?

Your boss still needs to make sure your work environment is Covid-safe.

As an employer, your boss must protect workers and others from risks to their health and safety.

This means ensuring there is ventilation, regular cleaning and hand-washing as well as reduced mixing within teams.

Ms Chong said workers shoud discuss concerns with their employers.

She added: “Employers should be cautious as they could face legal action if an employee raises a health and safety concern and feels they have been unfairly treated.”

Do I have to come to the office if I am clinically vulnerable?

Rules on shielding will be dropped on July 19.

But the government guidance urges bosses to be understanding about those who are extremely or clinically vulnerable.

The guidance said: “You should give extra consideration to people at higher risk and to workers facing mental and physical health difficulties.

“Those who are clinically extremely vulnerable are no longer advised to shield.

“You should continue to support these workers by discussing with them their individual needs and supporting them in taking any additional precautions advised by their clinicians.”

Wetherspoons will sell £2 pints of ale to celebrate lockdown restrictions ending.

Supermarket’s including Tesco, Aldi and Lidl want you to keep wearing masks from Monday.

Here are all the other supermarket rules you need to know from July 19.

Boris Johnson vows to go ahead with step 4 of covid roadmap on July 19

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