Mandate Members – Boots Blackpool

DATE:      15th December 2021

TO:          Mandate Members, Boots Blackpool, Cork

FROM:    John O’ Donnell, Industrial Officer Organiser

RE:          Boots Blackpool – Various Issues

Dear Member

Below find copy of response from Mr. Mark McCasker,  Area Manager South,  Boots regarding the above for your information.

14th December 2021

Delivered by post and email to:

John O’Donnell
Mandate Trade Union
IBS House
1/2 Emmet Place

Dear John,
I write to you further to correspondence received from you on 29th November 2021.
In your letter you stated following a meeting with Boots team members in the Blackpool store, several issues have been raised that require immediate attention and I will respond to each point in turn.

In your letter you stated that the team have expressed serious concern regarding their health & safety and wellbeing as the store does not have a security presence on Monday and Tuesday each week. I want to reassure you that the health, welfare and safety of our team members is of paramount importance. Having reviewed guarding cover, I can confirm that there has been no change to the total number of guarding hours allocated to the store and the current rostering pattern continues to be reviewed by the management team in store on an ongoing basis. Furthermore, all staff have completed training and the relevant risk assessments have been completed in store as part of the General Workplace Risk Assessment.

In your letter you noted a concern regarding the planning of rosters. In response to this, I can confirm that team member’s rosters are prepared four weeks in advance, as also noted in your letter. From time to time we do experience absence within the team and may need to ask a team member to change their working hours, and we appreciate the flexibility of the team in supporting with this when it is necessary in order to deliver service to customers and patients.

In your letter you raised concerns that positive COVID-19 cases had been reported in store, but no close contacts were identified within the team. I wish to reassure you that any time a positive case is reported in a store, a thorough contact tracing process is carried out by the HSE, with the management team also following and implementing all HSE and Government guidance, in tandem with the Boots COVID-19 Line Manager Guidance. A Let’s Shop Safe Champion is also in place in each store, to feedback any concerns to the management team and I would encourage them to continue to do so.

Finally, in your letter you raised concerns around team members leaving not being replaced in store. I can confirm that the store is correctly staffed according to requirements which are continuously under review. The store has recruited six Christmas Customer Assistants and have allocated additional hours during December to part-time team members who wished to work some extra hours over this period. The store also has a permanent vacancy advertised which we are actively recruiting for.

I would like to note that the store management team and myself are always available to the team to discuss any concerns they may have , so we can address in a timely manner, at store level. Should you have any further queries or wish to discuss the matter with myself, I am available to speak with you on  …….

Yours sincerely,
Mark McCasker
Area Manager

Yours sincerely
for Mandate Trade Union

John O Donnell
Industrial Officer Organiser