John Lewis to pay full sick pay regardless of Covid vaccination status
John Lewis has told staff they will get full sick pay regardless of their Covid vaccination status, saying that it doesn’t “believe it’s right” to treat jabbed and unjabbed workers differently.
This differs from the approach of other retailers, including Next, Ikea and Morrisons which have all recently cut sick pay for unvaccinated employees who have to self-isolate.
In a blogpost on LinkedIn, John Lewis’s group operations director, Andrew Murphy, told its 70,000-strong workforce: “We’re not going to make any change of this type.” He added: “We just don’t believe it’s right to create a link between a partner’s vaccination status and the pay they receive.”
He said the company – which is owned by its employees, called partners, who receive an annual profit share – was “hugely supportive of the UK vaccination programme” and had given staff time off to get their jabs.
“We cast no judgment on the decisions of any other organisation; in fact we’ve enjoyed how united businesses – retailers especially – have been in the face of these huge corporate and societal challenges,” Murphy said.
“However, when life increasingly seems to present opportunities to create division – and with hopes rising that the pandemic phase of Covid may be coming to an end – we’re confident that this is the right approach for us.”