Leicester’s textile factories not linked to rise in coronavirus cases

There is no connection between Leicester’s textile factories and the recent rise in coronavirus cases in the city, a new report has found.

The city’s textile industry has been in the spotlight recently, with reports of various breaches of health and safety, employment law and not adhering to social distancing guidelines.

It’s also claimed that some factories were operating during the lockdown in April. These complaints were referred to the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for investigation.

The factories were visited by the HSE and the Police last week. However, after the inspection, no notices were served and none of the factories were required to close.

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Leicester’s Deputy City Mayor Cllr Adam Clarke said: “We are told that Public Health England has found no evidence to suggest that the rise in coronavirus cases in the city is linked to the textile industry.”

“Leicester has around 1,500 textile factories, the second highest concentration in the UK behind Manchester.”

“Many of these businesses are run perfectly ethically and make a huge contribution to our city economy. We are determined to do all we can to ensure that every factory in Leicester complies with the law and treats its workers with respect.”

The council is working with partners across the city to tackle issues with factory working.

However, it has no powers to check on working conditions inside a building, enforce the minimum wage, or monitor the legality of the workforce. A number of national enforcement bodies are responsible for this.

Anyone who has concerns about a business not adhering to social distancing measures or exploiting their workers is urged to email details to c19business@leicester.gov.uk

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