Mar 23, 2020 Announcements

As a country now more than ever, we all need to do what we can to reduce the spread of the COVID-19 virus.

That is why the government has given clear guidance on self-isolation, household isolation and social distancing.

Our temporary workers who are currently working are probably asking themselves – what they should do tomorrow morning (Tuesday 24th March 2020). Simple advices are as follows: if you fall into the key worker category (details below), currently have no symptoms of Coronavirus (COVID-19), or are not subject to the need to self-isolate and are personally happy to work, please continue in your assignment until otherwise instructed by our clients or Simple Recruitment directly.


Please feel free to contact your local offices from 6am tomorrow morning (Tuesday 24th March 2020)  for advice should you require it:

Your Consultants can be contacted as follows:

Jayla Wilcox – Managing Director            07811 452631

Miriam Hunter – Branch Manager (Midsomer Norton)   07436 798649

Tony Britten – Branch Manager (Wiltshire)          07508 401654

Karen Wraxton – Branch Manager (Bideford)    07791 635019


If your work is critical to the COVID-19 response, or you work in one of the critical sectors listed below, KEY WORKERS ARE LISTED BELOW

Health and social care

This includes but is not limited to doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributers of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.

 Education and childcare

This includes childcare, support and teaching staff, social workers and those specialist education professionals who must remain active during the COVID-19 response to deliver this approach.

Key public services

This includes those essential to the running of the justice system, religious staff, charities and workers delivering key frontline services, those responsible for the management of the deceased, and journalists and broadcasters who are providing public service broadcasting.

Local and national government

This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of the COVID-19 response, or delivering essential public services, such as the payment of benefits, including in government agencies and arms length bodies.

Food and other necessary goods

This includes those involved in food production, processing, distribution, sale and delivery, as well as those essential to the provision of other key goods (for example hygienic and veterinary medicines).

Public safety and national security

This includes police and support staff, Ministry of Defence civilians, contractor and armed forces personnel (those critical to the delivery of key defence and national security outputs and essential to the response to the COVID-19 pandemic), fire and rescue service employees (including support staff), National Crime Agency staff, those maintaining border security, prison and probation staff and other national security roles, including those overseas.


This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the COVID-19 response, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass.

Utilities, communication and financial services

This includes staff needed for essential financial services provision (including but not limited to workers in banks, building societies and financial market infrastructure), the oil, gas, electricity and water sectors (including sewerage), information technology and data infrastructure sector and primary industry supplies to continue during the COVID-19 response, as well as key staff working in the civil nuclear, chemicals, telecommunications (including but not limited to network operations, field engineering, call centre staff, IT and data infrastructure, 999 and 111 critical services), postal services and delivery, payments providers and waste disposal sectors.

If workers think they fall within the critical categories above, they should confirm with their employer that, based on their business continuity arrangements, their specific role is necessary for the continuation of this essential public service.

 UK lockdown: what are the new coronavirus restrictions?

 What do the new restrictions involve?

In brief: an Italian-style lockdown to force people to stay at home beyond a small range of very limited circumstances. Under the terms explained by Boris Johnson in his TV address, people will be allowed to leave home only for the following reasons:

  • shopping for necessities, as infrequently as possible;
  • one form of exercise a day, such as running or cycling, alone or with household members;
  • for medical or care needs, for example to help a vulnerable person;
  • travelling to and from work, but only if you cannot work from home.

Meeting friends, shopping for anything beyond essentials, and gathering in crowds are now banned.

We would also ask our Simple Temporary workers to note that the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme currently only relates to ‘employees’ (those on contracts of employment) that would otherwise be dismissed during the Coronavirus pandemic.

It does not cover temporary workers who are working on Contracts for Services (Simple temporary workers).

It is also not applicable to self-Isolation, it is purely to prevent those ‘employed’ from being laid off.


What are the qualifying criteria for SSP?

  • SSP is payable to employees and certain other ‘employed earners’ who pay Class 1 NI contributions, such as agency workers – they are treated as employees for SSP purposes.
  • It’s paid for sickness absence – when an employee is unable to work or is deemed unable to work (when certain conditions apply).
  • As of 13 March 2020 it is payable to employees who are self-isolating in line with Coronavirus self-isolation guidance issued from 12 March 2020 by Public Health England, NHS Service Scotland and Public Health Wales.
  • Employees must provide evidence of incapacity – normally a self-certificate for the first 7 days and doctor’s fit note following that.

Although employers are being urged to be flexible given that people are being advised not to go to their GP if they suspect they have or have been exposed to Coronavirus.

Simple Recruitment: As of Monday 23rd March 2020, will now require an ‘Isolation Note’ available from NHS111 service

  • Employees must notify their employer of the sickness absence as per the regulations and any agreement with the employer.

Please call your local Simple Recruitment office

  • Employee must have weekly earnings of at least the lower earnings limit – currently £118 per week (£120 from April 2020).
  • SSP is currently £94.25 per week (increasing to £95.85 per week from April 2020).

Currently only paid from the fourth qualifying day of absence but the Prime Minister has announced that it will be payable from day 1 where related to Coronavirus. Backdated to the 13th March 2020.


Ref: on Wednesday 18.03.2020

Featured Articles