Kerala

COVID-19: Aggressive testing for migrant workers in Kerala

The Labour Department has decided to conduct aggressive testing of migrant workers even as the government reassures them to stay back by guaranteeing food and shelter during the State-wide lockdown set to kick in on Saturday.

The testing will be coordinated by the district collectors in association with the Labour Department and the contractors engaging the workers.

“The contractors have also been asked to identify buildings for isolating migrant workers testing positive for SARS-CoV-2. We have also asked the Civil Supplies Corporation to distribute food kits containing specific commodities matching the food habits of migrants, in coordination with the district collectors, the labour and the local self-government departments,” said S. Chithra, State Labour Commissioner.

Call centres

The department has also set up round-the-clock call centres (155214, 1800 425 55214) at the labour Commissionerate and district labour offices to help migrant labourers during the lockdown. The centres are managed by staff proficient in Hindi, Bengali, Assamese and Odiya. Awareness messages and videos are also being disseminated on social media in these languages.

So far, 748 migrant workers have tested positive for COVID-19 and three deaths have been reported across the State. The department has addressed 72 complaints received at call centres across the districts.

The department staff, including assistant labour officers, have also been asked to work round the clock. The labour Commissionerate will ensure that the daily calls are redressed. The department staff will visit migrant labour settlements to generate awareness about the pandemic protocol and the need to comply with the lockdown restrictions.

Control measures

A special committee of additional labour commissioners has been formed at the labour Commissionerate for COVID control measures. The Enforcement Additional Labour Commissioner will be in charge of coordinating them.

District labour officers will facilitate arrangement of ambulances and hospital admissions of migrant workers in coordination with Disha helpline.


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Printable version | Jun 22, 2021 10:46:33 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/kerala/covid-19-aggressive-testing-for-migrant-workers-in-kerala/article34506991.ece

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