// Waitrose reverses “time bank” policy
// Self-isolating staff were expected to recover the time they took off to care for family for no extra pay
// “We’re really sorry that we got it wrong,” Waitrose said in a statement
Waitrose has done a u-turn on a pay policy where workers self-isolating because of their family would have to make up the hours they owed at a later date.
Originally, Waitrose was to pay its staff in full while they self-isolated amid the coronavirus pandemic, but its “time bank” system meant they were expected to recover the time they took off for no extra pay – covering up to two weeks’ worth of hours missed.
The problem pertained to asymptomatic workers who self-isolated because a family member displayed Covid-19 symptoms.
- John Lewis & Waitrose staff working through pandemic to receive £25 extra per week
- Waitrose apologises after elderly struggle to secure delivery slots
- Waitrose unveils new measures to protect staff & customers
Waitrose’s previous policy stated: “If they are physically well enough themselves to work, then we will explore the option of working at home in the first instance.”
However, last night the upmarket grocer pledged to reverse the policy.
“We’re really sorry that we got it wrong,” Waitrose said in a statement.
“We’ve listened to our partners and changed our policy. ”
It added: “Partners who are self-isolating without symptoms and unable to work from home will no longer be required to ‘time bank’ any of their time.
“Instead they will be on authorised paid absence from day one.”
The “time bank” controversy emerged a few days after Waitroise parent company John Lewis Partnership said it was giving all frontline staff an additional £25 per week worked during April and May to thank them for their efforts during the coronavirus crisis.
It meant all full-time shop floor workers could receive up to £200 in bonus pay.