The UK railway ticketing worker dies for Covid-19 after being spat

Belly Mujinga died from Covid-19 after being spat on while working at Victoria station, central London.
Belly Mujinga, 47, worked with a colleague when a member of the public attacked them, spat and coughed on them and said he had the new coronavirus, said its union, the Transport Salaried Staffs Association (TSSA), in a statement Tuesday.

Mujinga, who had a basic health condition, was working for the Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) in the station concourse at the time of the accident on March 22nd.

British transport police said in a statement to CNN that an investigation into the accident had been initiated.

“Belly and her colleague asked to be allowed to work from inside the building with a protective barrier between them and the public for the rest of that day,” said TSSA in his statement.

“The management said they needed people working outside and sent them back to the lobby for the rest of the shift.”

Both women came out and completed the shift, added the union, but had no personal protective equipment.

Mujinga had underlying breathing problems for which she had undergone an operation, regular hospital appointments and previously needed to take a break from work, according to the TSSA.

The union claims that GTR was aware of his condition and, even after the accident, put Mujinga down only after his doctor had called his job around March 25th.

Manuel Cortes, TSSA secretary general, accused GTR of not taking Mujinga’s attack “seriously enough” and criticized the company.

“Being a vulnerable person in the” at risk “category and his conditions are known to his employer, there are questions as to why GTR hasn’t dismissed him from frontline functions in this pandemic,” Cortes said in the TSSA statement. . “There are serious questions about his death, it was not inevitable.”

See also  Axl Rose and Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin engage in a not so civil war on Twitter

GTR is investigating the allegations, he said in a CNN statement Tuesday, adding that he takes the charges “extremely seriously”.

“The safety of our customers and staff, who are the key workers themselves, continues to rank first and we follow the latest government advice,” said Angie Doll, CEO of Southern Railway and Gatwick Express.

“We are shocked that our dedicated colleague Belly has passed away and our deepest sympathies are with her family, with whom we have been in contact at this very difficult time,” he also said.

Both Mujinga and her colleague fell ill with Covid-19 a few days after the assault, according to the TSSA.

On April 2 – only 11 days after the accident – Mujinga was taken to Barnet Hospital, north London, on an ambulance and placed on a ventilator.

“Belly died on April 5, 14 days after being attacked at Victoria station,” said TSSA.

She leaves behind an 11-year-old daughter and a husband, who last saw her when she was taken away by ambulance, added the union.

“We are shocked and devastated by Belly’s death,” Cortes said in the TSSA statement. The union said it is taking legal advice on the situation and supporting Mujinga’s family and colleagues.

Is the British minority community affected disproportionately by coronavirus? The lack of public data makes it difficult to answer

He also reported the accident to the Railway Inspectorate, the security arm of the Office for Roads and Railways (ORR).

An ORR spokesperson told CNN that the office is investigating the accident.

TSSA revealed Mujinga’s story as the British government urged some people to return to work if they were unable to do it from home, easing some of the restrictions it had put in place to stop the spread of Covid-19.

See also  House approves $ 3 trillion dollars in Covid aid and historical rules change to allow for remote voting

The union says there is not enough guidance or protection for frontline workers like Mujinga.

“Rather than talk about easing the blockade, the government must first make sure that the right precautions and protections have been taken so as not to lose more lives,” said Cortes.

“Our railway industry must take a very serious look at what tasks are considered” essential “and must put in place protections for all our members and passengers.”

TSSA also called on the government to implement additional measures to compensate workers in the forefront of the rail sector for their work during these difficult times.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here