Ban the common cold?

Discussion in 'Off-Topic Chat' started by Cornet Nev., Aug 19, 2007.

  1. Cornet Nev.

    Cornet Nev. Member

    While I have said all I want to on the smoking ban, some one came up with the common cold in an answer to me, so I think a separate thread on the subject is appropriate.
    How many times have you or I caught a cold through it being passed on from someone else?
    Many times or even every time is the only answer. It is debilitating, results in either poor performance at work or time off work, and in my case recently, not able to attend practice. Yet you or I are still allowed to go out in public, sneeze, cough, or just generally propagate the virus wherever we please. I feel it is time that it became an offence to be out in public while carrying this vile virus and should become a notifiable disease. It is time we did something about it as it can cause death in the vulnerable, or lead on to other hard to cure infections. If the government can ban smoking in public places, then it is about time that carrying a cold was banned as well.
  2. Will the Sec

    Will the Sec Active Member

    Oh, what a can of worms.

    We seem to live in a world where it is a sin to be sick, so ailing people come to work rather than recovering first.

    I am adamant that if you are ill, you get better, and worry about any consequences when you are better. In most cases, any foreseen "consequences" are non existent.

    The most extreme and ridiculous case I came across was where a colleague in another part of the organisation came back from India and returned to work clearly seriously ill. He promptly collapsed and was taken to hospital. His wife later said he had been ill for three days before flying home, and worse on the two days before coming back to work.

    Two hours after he was admitted, the office was cordoned off, and our visiting officers were all recalled to base. The hospital advised that the patient had a serious case of malaria.

    After five and a half hours, people were allowed to leave when health officials gave the building the all clear.

    When he returned to work about three months later, it became clear he was paranoid about taking one day off work, never mind three months. His supervisor didn't help, by constantly spouting rubbish about the consequences of going sick. If you'd believed her, you could be sacked for inefficiency for one day's illness.

    The atmosphere changed in the office after that, as the correct information about inefficiency procedures was given to everyone.

    So, Nev, I sympathise with you, but I see no point banning an airborne virus (and its thousands of variations), but do see value in educating people in how the law stands with regard to sick leave.
  3. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    Couldn't agree more Will.

    I can understand any business trying to getrid of the "taking a sickie" culture that does exist... but this is not the way. The onus has been shifted by policy onto managers, NONE of whom have ANY medical training whatsoever, and who on average are much less likely to be impartial than any doctor. Result - sick people in work infecting everyone else.
  4. Jan H

    Jan H Moderator Staff Member

    "banning the common cold" would be rediculous of course, but in countries like Japan for example, it's considered to be impolite, to just walk around when you have the cold, infecting other people. That's why you see them walking around with the white face masks sometimes.
  5. FionaI

    FionaI New Member

    Since we are stuck with the common cold- decongestants are a great asset . Taken as soon as sypmtoms start no runny or blocked up noses thus making playing bearable when you have the cold. Check the packet for instructions and contra indications.
  6. on_castors

    on_castors Member

    The fact that colds are transmissible in the fairly early stages, often just as symptoms are developing makes it even more difficult to judge when to lock yourself away even if you are being very considerate to others. Most of the problem is over after a few days, but at that point it is odds-on that you are still left bunged up yet would be wasting your time being "quarantined" then! :-(
  7. leisa

    leisa Active Member

    LOL, a good idea but i wouldnt exactly compare it to banning smoking! ie you dont really choose to get a cold!!
  8. Bayerd

    Bayerd Active Member

    Well, if you're too scared of your manager to call in sick when you're ill, go off and grow a backbone, or find a job elsewhere. I've never heard anything so rediculous.
  9. DaveR

    DaveR Active Member

    Today is my first day back in work after five weeks sick leave (not because of a cold, I hasten to add!). My company has been very supportive.

    I for one think that people with colds should stay at home because I invariably catch them! :(
  10. Di

    Di Active Member

    It's not a case of "being scared" though. Companies these days are making you feel more and more guilty for being sick and taking time off and putting you under more pressure to be at work. Our company make you phone in, (obviously), but not just on the first day of sickness, but before your starting time each day you are off. OK, that's a minor inconvenience, but then when you're taken for "appraisal", the more time you've had off sick, the lower your performance level is and the lower the pay rise or any bonuses.
  11. fuzzyduck

    fuzzyduck New Member

    Well said Di, if we take any time off sick we lose bonus money. We are paid little enough as it is so really can't afford to be off sick. I don't like the situation but it's even worse for my supervisor. If any of us takes time off sick he loses his bonus even though he hasn't done anything.:mad:
  12. Laserbeam bass

    Laserbeam bass Active Member

    I haven't had a day off sick from my job in over 6 years, but if I am ill I wouldn't hesitate to have a day off. (Admittedly I was redundant for 20 months out of the 6 years). However some companies are quite liberal when it comes to sick leave, and others might as well be run by Ebeneezer Scrooge. My company operates a policy where you are entitled to no sick pay in the first year and 2 weeks full and two weeks half pay, and so on until finally you get to 35 years service and can go sick for the whole year. The moral of this is that some people cannot afford to take time off work if they are only going to SSP, which is not even close to the breadline.

    Pay the mortgage/rent or have a few days off with a cold. What would you do in that situation :?:
  13. andyp

    andyp Active Member

    This isn't a joking matter. There are departments where people have been given oral warnings when they reach 8 sick days, no matter what the circumstances. The next step after that is a written warning, then dismissal. If you happen to fall really ill twice in 18 months, you run the risk of losing your job, through no fault of your own.

    I agree with you that it is ridiculous, but it's true.
  14. bigmamabadger

    bigmamabadger Active Member

    When I was only just pregnant with LittleBabyBadger I had to have a few weeks off cos everything went a little bit wrong. I didn't want to tell HR the full reason but I saw Occupational Health and they told HR there was a genuine reason for my absence which I was not prepared to discuss for personal reasons.
    This absence, and the fact that I refused to give reasons until later on in the pregnancy, was used against me when I applied for a career-break rather than maternity leave. I didn't get the career-break and resigned instead.
  15. Di

    Di Active Member

    Also, it seems perfectly reasonable to take of 1, 2, or 3 months with stress and other similar conditions, but you phone in and ask for one day for a migraine (you have to speak to a team leader, you can't pass the message on from whoever answers the phone) you seem to get the third degree about when you got the pain, when are you coming back. Basically, you're just made to feel real uncomfortable about being off for the odd day with headaches, back aches, and viruses.

    A couple of years ago, I had two long term sickness breaks, 7 weeks following a total hysterectomy, then 6 months later another 6 weeks to have the insides repaired where the internal mending came undone! (Incisional hernia they called that). When it came to my appraisal, I was surprised to find that these two long term sickness were to be discounted, because "it's not like you had any choice in the matter", but the small handful of days I'd had throughout the year for migraines or back pains or viruses were.

    OO ooh, and to add to this, those who had a perfect non-sickness record were "rewarded" with large boxes of Thorntons! :rolleyes:
  16. Pythagoras

    Pythagoras Active Member

    Do any teachers on here know if they take absences into account when you apply for Threshold payments?
  17. bigmamabadger

    bigmamabadger Active Member

    The place where I was working when the pregnancy-related absences occurred had at least two people "working" there who hadn't been in for 18 months due to stress. But they were big important people, not just little cogs in the wheel...
  18. WoodenFlugel

    WoodenFlugel Moderator Staff Member

    But don't forget that little cogs change the direction of the whole gearbox! :)

    I've also had a bad experience - but not strictly sickness or pay related. I would regularly come in early and leave an hour (or sometimes more) late for work without being paid for it, but when my Dad died suddenly a few years ago I was given the minimum amount of compassionate leave recommended (3 days) and they even rang me the day before his funeral asking when I'd be back. When I got back I was given a choice - either take the extra days I took off to organise the funeral and generally sort myself out again afterwards unpaid or as annual leave. Suddenly all those extra hours - which over the years previous must've added up to weeks in total - were forgotten about. That was a pretty low blow when I was dealing with the death of a parent as well.
  19. bigmamabadger

    bigmamabadger Active Member

    That's vile. Compassionate leave should be much more than that.
    I understand that small companies may not be able to give as much time as people might like; long-term absence of a staff member in a 6-person team might mean the whole place goes under. However the smaller places tend to be more sympathetic at least, which often makes all the difference.
    Big companies are soulless and have to do everything by the book.
    Better work/life balance now!
  20. tpcornet12

    tpcornet12 Member

    My employers refuse to consider attendance bonuses and I agree entirely.. By rewarding someone for not being sick is effectively punishing someone for having a genuine illness.

    I work for the Civil Service and its fair treatment like that making me want to remain on the payroll despite being able to earn more elsewhere. - btw I have a very good sick record.

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