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TSSA Presses Rail Industry Over BAME Workers Covid Risk

22 May 2020

TSSA General Secretary, Manuel Cortes, has called on the rail industry to take action over evidence showing BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic) workers are at greater risk from Covid-19 than other communities.

Numbers are emerging showing BAME people – especially black and those of Bangladeshi and Pakistani backgrounds – are most likely to die from covid-19, with black people being five times more likely to die than white people.

As a result of a call with industry bosses Cortes is demanding that risk assessments factor in the increased threat to BAME workers from the virus.

Commenting, Cortes said: “We quickly need to know what measures, if any, are being taken to make sure risk assessments for our railway workers fully take into account this heightened risk from Covid-19 to BAME communities.

“I have told bosses straight, and it's quite simple, when we carry out risk assessments there has to be an adjustment to make sure we are fully taking account of all groups in our society.

“There is good work going on in some places, notably with Network Rail, but this needs to happen across our rail industry so we can properly get to grips with the increased risks BAME people are facing and ensure they are not put in harm’s way.”

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