BREAKING: 60 Linden Foods staff in walkout over 'social distancing'

BREAKING: 60 Linden Foods staff in walkout over 'social distancing'

Staff who have refused to start their shift at Linden Foods

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IN THE region of 60 workers at Dungannon based Linden Foods have refused to start their shift in a dispute over infection control measures at the meat factory.

The number protesting outside the factory represents around 10 per cent of the workforce.

It is claimed by the Unite union that staff are citing a “total absence of social distancing measures on the boning line, in the canteen and at entry and exit points”.

Brian Hewitt, Unite Regional Officer for workers at Linden Foods, which is based at the Granville Industrial Estate, was contacted by workers after they walked out this morning and said his union will do “whatever it takes to support our members' fight for adequate Coronavirus infection controls.”

He said: "There have been ongoing issues between management and workers at Linden Foods in Dungannon over the issue of the absence of social distancing for workers on the boning line, in the canteen, changing areas and at entry and exit points.

“The company's management has provided no additional wash facilities and failed to stagger breaks.

"Workers have been reporting to Unite that those exhibiting symptoms are still allowed to work as are those with family members who are self-isolating as a result of being in the high risk health category.

“Everyone needs to take responsibility but the company’s actions are putting workers needlessly at further risk.

"Management are continuing to ignore the concerns of their workers - they are putting the lives and well-being of their employees at risk - their intransigence is entirely unacceptable.

“Linden Foods must engage with these workers and commit to provide comprehensive infection control measures to end this walkout.”

The Courier has contacted Linden Foods for a statement.

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