UK Border Force: Staff

Home Office written question – answered on 16th December 2021.

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Photo of Julian Lewis Julian Lewis Chair, Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what recent assessment she has made of the vulnerability of Border Force personnel to viral infection from direct contact with large numbers of asylum seekers rescued in the English Channel; what steps she plans to take in conjunction with the Department for Health and Social Care to help ensure that such Border Force personnel are able to be fully vaccinated as a matter of urgency; and if she will make a statement.

Photo of Tom Pursglove Tom Pursglove Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Ministry of Justice and Home Office)

All Home Office employees are working to a COVID safe system of work when conducting frontline duties during the pandemic. This includes robust control measures when working with passengers, migrants or encountering symptomatic persons around the country or at sea. Migrants arriving via the English Channel are predominantly taken to Tug Haven where they are provided with facemasks and tested. France is not a red-list country and therefore the risk posed to officers is similar to that of larger ports around the country.

All frontline staff are working to the controls within the risk assessment and safe systems of work such as social distancing wherever possible, mandatory use of type 2R PPE masks and gloves.

Home Office employees are not prioritised for vaccinations and as of Wednesday 15th December, all over 18’s will be eligible to receive the booster jab which we strongly encourage staff to get.

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