Search

Manager removed from coronavirus testing site after racism complaint

PUBLISHED: 08:50 15 July 2020 | UPDATED: 11:06 15 July 2020

Postwick park and ride coronavirus test centre. Picture: Mike Page

Postwick park and ride coronavirus test centre. Picture: Mike Page

Copypright Mike Page, All Rights Reserved Before any use is made of this picture, including dispaly, publication, broadcast, syn

A manager was dismissed from a Norfolk coronavirus testing centre on Tuesday after allegedly making racist comments.

Postwick Park and Ride which is currently closed and being used at a Covid-19 testing station.
 Photo: Sonya Duncan/ArchantPostwick Park and Ride which is currently closed and being used at a Covid-19 testing station. Photo: Sonya Duncan/Archant

G4S, which runs the drive-through facility at Postwick Park and Ride, removed the manager after complaints from workers that he had used the “N-word” as a “joke”.

In a complaint to G4S and an employment agency, staff alleged that the racism went beyond one comment.

They claimed the manager:

-Referred to a European employee as a “refugee” in front of other staff

Postwick Park and Ride which is currently being used at a Covid-19 testing station.
 Photo: Sonya Duncan
/ArchantPostwick Park and Ride which is currently being used at a Covid-19 testing station. Photo: Sonya Duncan /Archant

-Repeatedly asked how two siblings working on site could be related when they have “different skin colours”.

-Failed to investigate how a swastika was scratched in to one of the site’s cabins

-Shared racist comments on Facebook about immigrants and ethnic minorities being criminals

On Sunday, the manager told staff in a morning briefing: “I had an issue brought to me this morning. It is quite a serious issue that apparently I used an inappropriate word.

In a video seen by this newspaper he said: “Now if that is the case, I don’t believe I did, then my door is always open.

“The word that is supposed to have been used, I would not have used. So to be honest I’m quite surprised that if anything I’ve said has upset somebody.”

A staff member first complained on June 21 to their employment agency, HR GO. A second email was sent on Sunday, July 12.

On July 7, staff also emailed G4S to complain.

“Comments have caused myself and several members at the Postwick Testing site to feel uncomfortable,” they wrote.

However Samantha Mills, G4S Eastern regional manager, said the company was only told about the racist comments on Sunday and “quickly started an investigation”.

“We do not tolerate racism in any form and take swift action when incidents occur that go against our values,” she said.

“This complaint relates to one person, and we are extremely proud of our thousands of dedicated team members at testing sites across the country.”

A HR GO spokesman said: “These allegations are taken very seriously and we will be liaising with G4S during their investigation.”


If you value what this story gives you, please consider supporting the Eastern Daily Press. Click the link in the orange box above for details.

Related articles

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Latest from the Eastern Daily Press