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TWU accuses Qantas of inactivity as more worker test COVID-19 positive

Author : Saipriya Iyer | Published Date : 2020-04-02 

The union for airline baggage holders, TWU (Transport Workers’ Union), has reportedly accused Qantas Airways, the largest Airline network of Australia, of not ensuring worker safety against COVID-19 after the company’s baggage handlers tested positive for coronavirus.

The Union stated that the airlines are not doing enough to safeguard its workers. Seven new cases have come to light after it was discovered that they were linked to the six baggage handlers working for Qantas who tested positive for COVID-19 earlier, bringing the tally to 13.

Of the seven new cases, five are baggage holders while two of them are family members.

As per the SA Health, approximately 100 ground staff and baggage handlers might need to be self-quarantined for the next 14 days owing to the risk of COVID-19 outbreak. Meanwhile, the company has flown in a couple of airport managers to train a new batch of baggage handlers.

SA Health also stated that anyone who has passed through the Adelaide airport from Monday and is experiencing flu-like symptoms must get tested immediately.

The TWU (Transport Workers' Union) has asked the company to hand over documents and information relating to the initial six baggage handlers. The union also claimed that Qantas repeatedly down-played the exposure risk to its employees, including cleaners, caterers, baggage handlers, and cabin crew.

Branch Secretary of TWU SA, Ian Smith stated that there was a worrying amount of evidence that the virus was allowed to spread due to a lax systems. The Union was informed that even after the first infection adequate protection and measures were not taken to restrict the outbreak.

Smith further added that this problem is extremely serious as it implies that Qantas allowed its employees, and employees from other organizations to be exposed to the virus due to its negligence.

Seeing the spread of the virus, the company canceled seven Adelaide flights, which also included a plane that took off from Sydney and was turned back mid-flight.

Travelers flying from Adelaide are already urged to stop all their non-essential travel while travelers who should fly, have been informed to wash their hands as frequently as possible as well as wipe down their respective bags.


Source credit: https://www.9news.com.au/national/coronavirus-baggage-handler-union-slams-qantas-over-adelaide-airport-covid-19-outbreak/cf1f79e4-6961-4e2d-b94b-8e2205e5501e


About Author

Saipriya Iyer

Saipriya Iyer

Saipriya Iyer presently works as a content developer for fractovia.org. Having dabbled with the domain of content creation for nearly half a decade, she now boasts of an enviable portfolio, holding substantial experience in penning down pieces related to technology, finance, and a wide spectrum of other industry verticals. A qualified computer engineering graduate from the University of Pune, Saipriya can often be found leveraging her knowledge of software technology and electronics in her write-ups. She can be contacted at- [email protected] | https://twitter.com/saipriya_i

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