Community members emphasise impact of lockdown

In September 2020 we ran our second lockdown survey. 

We were really pleased that this survey had the greatest number of responses we’ve ever had – thank you to everybody who responded and shared your experiences and feedback. This really helps us to shape our offer to you, and we are working hard to respond to your feedback and ensure that you are getting what you need from your union.  

Here we’re sharing four big things we’ve learned from the survey.  

Mental health has been affected by the pandemic

53% of you told us that COVID-19 has had a negative effect on your mental health. Only 5.8% of you said lockdown had had a positive impact on your mental health. Mental health is a hugely important factor in people’s experiences of work, and we continue to share that message with employers and government, asking them to prioritise it at every level.  

Incomes have been affected

32% of you told us that you have experienced a fall in income because of the pandemic. However, for self-employed members that figure rose to 84%. This emphasises how important it is that the government continue to support the self-employed, and that the gaps in the package of support for self-employed members are plugged urgently.  

At Community we’re proud to be the union for the self-employed and will continue to fight for a fair deal for every self-employed worker, with our campaigns for better employment rights and protections.  

Our sectors are very different, and have faced very different challenges 

We know that working arrangements have been very different for our members, and this massively varies by sector. The majority of people in the justice sector have continued to work from their workplaces and many in the charity, finance and professional sectors have been working from home.  

That also means different support is needed- for example, across the justice sector we’re making sure that everyone has adequate supplies of PPE, in the steel sector we’re running the “Britain we need our steel campaign”, and across the charity and professional sectors, we’re helping individuals who are facing redundancies or increased uncertainty.

Significant numbers are concerned about health and safety at work 

More than 60% of you told us that you feel safe and confident about the health and safety measures at your workplace. However, 37% of you said you didn’t- we know that that’s not good enough.

Making sure that health and safety at work is taken seriously is one of the most important things that we can do as a union. If you have a concern about any specific element of health and safety, please get in touch with your rep, or if you don’t have one, the service centre, who will put you in touch with the right official. 

Next steps 

We’ve already used what you told us to submit to the Treasury Committee’s Post-pandemic spending review, and the Treasury’s Comprehensive spending review.  

We’ll continue to use your feedback to lobby for the changes you need and keep asking the government to plug the gaps in the support it is giving workers- such as the gaps in the SEISS. 

We’re also working to act on the feedback you gave us about how we as a union can better support you. We received hundreds of individual suggestions and we’re in the process of working through them- some changes you may see right away, and others will take a little longer. 

If you have any questions or want to share any more ideas, please email rppu@community-tu.org  

Community has produced resources to support our members through coronavirus. You can see and access those resources here.

Community represents workers in every sector of the UK economy. To join Community, visit here. 



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