Covid update: Royal Mail commits over £25 million to protecting its people during the coronavirus crisis

Shane O’Riordain, Managing Director of Marketing, Regulation and Corporate Affairs, Royal Mail said:

“We have committed over £25 million to buying equipment such as hand sanitiser, disposable gloves and other additional protective measures to keep our people safe as they keep the UK connected during the ongoing lockdown.

“This includes distributing half a million bottles of hand sanitiser through our operation in recent weeks. As well as increasing supplies of hand sanitiser, soap, cleaning equipment and disposable gloves, we have used this significant cash sum to source face masks for those who want them.”

Changes to protect our people and our customers during the coronavirus crisis

The Universal Postal Service provides a lifeline to businesses and communities everywhere during the coronavirus crisis. The delivery of parcels and letters is a key way of keeping the country together and helping many people who may not have the option to leave their homes. The UK Government has recognised Royal Mail as having a key role to play in the national response to this emergency.

Royal Mail’s number one priority is keeping its people and customers safe. This investment is the latest in a range of preventive measures the company has taken to protect both its colleagues and its customers.

Royal Mail was one of the first delivery companies to introduce contact free delivery.  Where an item won’t fit through a customer’s letterbox, the postman or woman now places the item at the customer’s door, knocks, and steps aside to a safe distance while the customer retrieves their item. We are also temporarily not handing over hand-held devices to customers to capture signatures.  The vast majority of mail can be posted safely through the letterbox without any interaction with the customer at all.

Royal Mail has changed its standard ways of working to ensure that, wherever possible, colleagues stay two metres apart. It has also implemented a new rule so that only one person is in a Royal Mail delivery vehicle at any one time. These new social distancing measures are aimed at offering further protection for our colleagues and our customers. We continue to promote regular hand washing with soap and water. We have also adopted enhanced disinfectant cleaning of communal areas in all Royal Mail sites on a daily basis. Royal Mail continues to follow the preventive guidance of global and domestic public health authorities.

Royal Mail continues to engage with the Communication Workers Union and Unite/CMA on a daily basis on this matter. We are pleased that at a local level and through national officers we have been working together to find practical solutions to the many issues that have emerged. We have a joint interest in protecting our people.

Royal Mail has also launched its ‘Thumbs Up’ campaign to remind customers to keep at least two metres distance – more than the height of a postbox - from postmen and postwomen when they are out delivering. This is in line with Government guidance on social distancing.  Further details can be found at

Source: Royal Mail Group

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