Call to vaccinate essential transport staff as next priority

As the number of people vaccinated against COVID-19 increases, transport and travel union TSSA has written to British transport ministers calling on them to ensure that essential transport workers are next in line for vaccination against coronavirus.

In the letters – sent to Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, Scotland’s Transport Minister Michael Matheson, and Wales Transport Minister Ken Skates – TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes says that frontline transport workers have “put their lives on the line” during the pandemic. He requests that all essential transport workers are next in line for vaccination after vulnerable groups and healthcare and care workers.

Manuel Cortes said: “With Covid case numbers rising sharply there is a race to get people vaccinated. It is absolutely right that vulnerable groups and healthcare and care workers are first in line for vaccination. After that, we want to see essential transport staff getting the lifesaving vaccinations.

“From getting key workers to hospitals and moving vital supplies around the country, our transport key workers have kept the country moving through the pandemic. Many have lost their lives to the virus, but they bravely continue to serve during this time of crisis.

“We must vaccinate transport workers as the next priority and I’m calling on transport ministers in England, Scotland and Wales to back this important step to protect our transport networks.”

On 11 January Transport for London revealed that 57 of its staff have died from coronavirus. At least 13 rail workers have also died from the virus.

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