United Kingdom

Harry Potter publisher Bloomsbury tells staff they MUST have their Covid vaccines

Publisher Bloomsbury has told staff vaccines will be compulsory when its offices reopen next month.

The Harry Potter publisher informed employees of the policy in an email sent before the second May Day bank holiday weekend. Offices are due to reopen from July 19.

It said it had based its decision on ‘medical and scientific advice’.

The Harry Potter publisher informed employees of the policy in an email sent before the second May Day bank holiday weekend. Offices are due to reopen from July 19

Pimlico Plumbers previously announced Covid-19 jabs would be compulsory for staff and new employees would not be taken on if they had not been inoculated.

Care home workers have also been told by the government that they should be vaccinated or risk losing their jobs.

Bloomsbury’s edict attracted criticism online, with one person likening it to George Orwell’s 1984.

They wrote: ‘Time to hit Big Brother Bloomsbury Books where it hurts with its fascistic approach to its staff… don’t buy what they’re selling.’

Another said: ‘What is the legality of this? Can staff be ‘forced’ to be immunised?? What safeguards are there in place to ensure this doesn’t roll over to other vaccinations?’

But a spokesman for the firm - which closed offices before the government ordered people to work from home last year - told The Bookseller there had been two deaths among its staff.

He added: ‘We will continue to make our own decisions, conscious of the serious consequences of making the wrong ones.

Pimlico Plumbers previously announced Covid-19 jabs would be compulsory for staff and new employees would not be taken on if they had not been inoculated

‘Inevitably, not everyone will agree. We accept this and, as with so many decisions in the pandemic, we have to do what we believe is right for the wellbeing of all our staff.’

A poll of 2,000 workers in March conducted by employee review website Glassdoor found more than half thought staff should be required to have a Covid vaccination before being allowed back in to work.

One in seven threatened to hand in their notice if they were ordered to return before all employees had been inoculated.

But the GMB union said it would be better to ‘educate and reassure’ staff to encourage uptake.

‘Bullying workers into taking a vaccine they are unsure about is cruel, unfair and a recipe for disaster,’ legal director Susan Harris told the BBC.

The CBI said there were few industries where the compulsory approach was ‘appropriate’ but added ‘in some sectors it could prove necessary’.

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