“Government should value key workers, not just clap them on Thursdays”

Osian Richards

Tell us about your job during the pandemic

It’s very similar to normal. Mostly, my job’s about asset management, looking after the bridges and other highway structure in Gwynedd, 3,000 highways structures and 650 bridges. The work involves managing the inspection routine, maintenance work and major works. Most of this can carry on as it’s a very rural county; the only aspect to stop is major works.

What’s your view of how public service workers have responded to the crisis?

People have responded really well. Some, like care workers, are working in extremely difficult situations and refuse workers have been concerned about waste potentially contaminated with tissues.

What’s your message to the government?

Government has talked down care workers and other front line staff in the past, describing them as ‘low-skilled’ and not important. Well, now we’ve seen the truth. They are not low-skilled and their work supporting people in their homes or in care homes is holding up the NHS and holding up our community.

How are you going to celebrate the end of the lockdown?

I am very lucky living in the countryside near Bangor. There are a lot worse places to be locked-down but the first thing I’m going to do will be to take my dogs for a walk on the beach so they can run around.

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