IKEA megastore suffers coronavirus outbreak leaving 73 staff self-isolating
An IKEA store has suffered a coronavirus outbreak which has led to dozens of staff placed into self-isolation.
The branch in Reading, Berkshire, is closed to customers but staff continue to work as it operates a click and collect service.
In total 73 people are self-isolating after 13 colleagues tested positive for Covid-19, Berkshire Live reports.
One staff member, who wished to remain anonymous, alleged that other employees are "not being allowed" to self-isolate, a claim the store rejects.
They went on to claim pregnant staff members are being put at risk by being required to come into work, which the store also says is not true.
The employee said: "The truth of the amount of their employees that have tested positive for Covid-19, there are a lot.
"The store is closed to the public but employees have had to work still, regardless that a lot of their colleagues have tested positive to Covid-19.
"Some workers have worked with those affected and by rights should be isolating but they are told they are not allowed."
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IKEA said that no workers are being forced to work and said those who can work from home are being asked to do so.
The business said that any worker with concerns should raise them with their line manager.
Kim Chin-Sung, IKEA Reading market manager, said: "The health and safety of our customers and co-workers is our top priority and we have extremely robust safety measures in place, including social distancing, protective screens and additional regular cleaning.
"On Saturday, we were made aware that a co-worker had tested positive for Covid-19.
"Shortly after this, other co-workers began receiving alerts from the NHS Track and Trace System in the normal way, and were immediately sent home to self-isolate on full pay.
"In line with Government guidance, our store is closed to customers and is operating a contactless Click & Collect service.
"As an additional precaution we have significantly reduced our operation on-site."
In total 361 people are employed at the megastore.
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