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Coronavirus update from Wheatley Group Chief Executive Martin Armstrong
3 April 2020
From everyone at Wheatley, I hope you and your family are well.
What really matters in these difficult times, as we all know, is that our family and friends, colleagues and customers, remain healthy and safe. That is certainly, at Wheatley, our number-one priority.
In following rigorously the instructions and advice of government and NHS during the coronavirus crisis, we are able only to provide a restricted range of essential services. This has involved equipping hundreds of staff to work from home, while ensuring those who continue to be out and about in our communities and care facilities have the Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) needed - and stringent health and safety guidance – to work safely.
Features of our new working environment include:
- all housing officers, property management employees and a number of care staff staying in close contact with the people they work for from home - online and by telephone and text;
- repairs and maintenance services being limited to those of a “life and limb” nature;
- the operation of a virtual call centre, with all advisors being set up with the necessary I.T. to work from home;
- and Neighbourhood Environmental Teams limiting their responsibilities to essential services, such as fire-safety patrols, bulk uplifts and the cleaning of multi-storey blocks.
From Monday, Wheatley will join the Government Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and colleagues from across the business who are chosen to go on furlough will be given Leave of Absence.
The scheme covers 80% of the salary of employees earning up to £2500 per month, although it is important to note Wheatley will pay the full wage of all staff involved. All other terms and conditions also will remain in place and the furlough arrangements will be reviewed, in line with the needs of the business, every three weeks.
If you have would like to know more detail about how Wheatley is tackling the impact of the coronavirus crisis, please get in touch.
To read my message from last week, please go to Coronavirus update 25 March.