Coronavirus: the good, the bad and the ugly.

raetsel

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I thought it would be useful to create a record to document the behaviour of notable individuals, companies etc. around the world which have behaved either admirably or abominably during this crisis. This will no doubt be added to in the months ahead. Let's hope there are more positives than negatives at the end of it, but if companies need to be called out then we should all take it on board and shun them in the future.

First up; the good. Clarks Shoes
The company are closing all their retail outlets with immediate effect but have, commendably, committed to paying all their staff.
Clarks are one of a number of UK companies, founded by Quakers and operated on philanthropic principles, for the benefit of staff as well as the owners. They deserve to be remembered when this is over.
Clarks Shoes to pay all staff but will be shutting stores

The bad: Senator Richard Burr

The senator for N Carolina was busy during February offloading his huge share portfolio while at the same time reassuring the public about the effects of Coronavirus, and of course when his party colleague, the current US President, was downplaying the effects totally.

Senator Richard Burr Sold a Fortune in Stocks as G.O.P. Played Down Coronavirus Threat

The ugly: Coylumbridge hotel, Aviemore, Scotland owned by the Britannia Group

This really is the pits. I'm rarely shocked by the callousness of bad employers but what they did is truly shocking.

The owners of a Highland hotel that has sacked staff and made them homeless during the coronavirus outbreak have been roundly condemned.
More than a dozen workers at the Coylumbridge hotel near Aviemore received a letter on Thursday informing them management was “taking the latest government advice” and that staff employment had been terminated, with those who live at the hotel complex asked to leave the premises immediately.
I've never used the Britannia chain and don't know much about them, but I will give them a wide berth in future.
 
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Barroso

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Britannia Group

This really is the pits. I'm rarely shocked by the callousness of bad employers but what they did is truly shocking.



I've never used the Britannia chain and don't know much about them, but I will give them a wide berth in future.
With a name like 'Britannia', does this action of theirs surprise you?
 

raetsel

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With a name like 'Britannia', does this action of theirs surprise you?
Well, I have plenty of friends who are English, and who are the salt of the earth so I'm not going to go down that road.
I've found that it is perfectly possible to be both a very committed northern Irish "separatist" who wants unity, as I am, and also to remain aloof from the negative side of Irish nationalism.
But I've looked them up and they are consistent at any rate. I had a nagging feeling that Britannia Group weren't very good, probably based upon checking reviews before book hotels in Britain in the past, and lo and behold, Which magazine have been declaring them the worst hotel chain in the UK since 2013. I'm just amazed they're still in business. But any hotel management that treats paying guests with the sort of contempt implied by their standards, is hardly going to treat their staff differently.
How they remain in business is a mystery.
 

Peppermint

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I thought it would be useful to create a record to document the behaviour of notable individuals, companies etc. around the world which have behaved both admirably and abominably during this crisis. This will no doubt be added to in the months ahead. Let's hope there are more positives than negatives at the end of it, but if companies need to be called out then we should all take it on board and shun them in the future.

First up; the good. Clarks Shoes
The company are closing all their retail outlets with immediate effect but have, commendably, committed to paying all their staff.
Clarks are one of a number of UK companies, founded by Quakers and operated on philanthropic principles, for the benefit of staff as well as the owners. They deserve to be remembered when this is over.
Clarks Shoes to pay all staff but will be shutting stores

The bad: Senator Richard Burr

The senator for N Carolina was busy during February offloading his huge share portfolio while at the same time reassuring the public about the effects of Coronavirus, and of course when his party colleague, the current US President, was downplaying the effects totally.

Senator Richard Burr Sold a Fortune in Stocks as G.O.P. Played Down Coronavirus Threat

The ugly: Coylumbridge hotel, Aviemore, Scotland owned by the Britannia Group

This really is the pits. I'm rarely shocked by the callousness of bad employers but what they did is truly shocking.



I've never used the Britannia chain and don't know much about them, but I will give them a wide berth in future.

What I don't see is a name, or names? Britannia Group are owned/run by people.
In these times the only weapon we have against such behaviour is naming and shaming.
 

raetsel

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Buying Clarks shoes from here on in. Planning to boycott in any way I can those who act recklessly during this emergency.
I've been wearing Clarks all my life, firstly because as a child my mother always bought them for me, and because they produce solidly good quality. Secondly I'm an 8½, in Clarks consistently, but continental size 42 is always too tight while 43 is usually a little too big. It's good to learn that they have done this though, I've known about their altruistic Quaker ethos for some time.
 

raetsel

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What I don't see is a name, or names? Britannia Group are owned/run by people.
In these times the only weapon we have against such behaviour is naming and shaming.
I'm not sure what good names are. These are people you've never heard of. If you want a target the chain is it.
For the record, the Chief Executive, and largest shareholder remains Alex Langsam. Langsam is a non-domiciled taxpayer, registered as living in Austria for tax-purposes since 1999. So you are not going to find it convenient to dump the rotting contents of your "recycle" bin in his front garden any time soon. :)
 

Peppermint

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I'm not sure what good names are. These are people you've never heard of. If you want a target the chain is it.
For the record, the Chief Executive, and largest shareholder remains Alex Langsam. Langsam is a non-domiciled taxpayer, registered as living in Austria for tax-purposes since 1999. So you are not going to find it convenient to dump the rotting contents of your "recycle" bin in his front garden any time soon. :)

Fair point,
but at least if we say Alex Langsam is responsible, rather than some no name company, there is a chance he might get to hear about it, especially if it became the norm to name those in charge, rather than the companies they choose to hide behind
 

raetsel

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Fair point,
but at least if we say Alex Langsam is responsible, rather than some no name company, there is a chance he might get to hear about it, especially if it became the norm to name those in charge, rather than the companies they choose to hide behind
Point taken. But it seems pretty obvious (to me at least) that the people at the top are brass-necked sociopaths who have no shame. If I was successful aspiring senior executive in the hotel business, there is no way in hell I'd work for a company regarded as the "worst hotel chain in the UK". Presumably they compete on price, but even then I'm puzzled. There are a number of good low-budget hotel chains in the UK. Premier Inn, owned by Whitbreads, is probably the best of the bunch.
 

Peppermint

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Point taken. But it seems pretty obvious (to me at least) that the people at the top are brass-necked sociopaths who have no shame. If I was successful aspiring senior executive in the hotel business, there is no way in hell I'd work for a company regarded as the "worst hotel chain in the UK". Presumably they compete on price, but even then I'm puzzled. There are a number of good low-budget hotel chains in the UK. Premier Inn, owned by Whitbreads, is probably the best of the bunch.
Granted they often have some serious brass neck and often even a worse case of self delusion.
But even these twats can occasionally be brought back to the real world, yes it's rare, but it can happen. And putting the name of those culpable out in the open as much as possible can only help to keep them in check, if only a little bit.
 

raetsel

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Granted they often have some serious brass neck and often even a worse case of self delusion.
But even these twats can occasionally be brought back to the real world, yes it's rare, but it can happen. And putting the name of those culpable out in the open as much as possible can only help to keep them in check, if only a little bit.
I suspect, from the Wiki entry for that company that the CEO is a rather old man this stage, and probably living in splendid isolation for the most part. He doesn't seem to have received any royal honours which in itself is a bit unusual for the UK, but maybe tells its own story.
Maybe this will put Britannia Hotels out of business, but I doubt it. For a start it seems to be conservatively run and probably has very little debt.
 

mangaire2

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small point.
I was in Lidl in Ennis yesterday,
& noticed that the unit at the exit door, where you expressed your satisfaction or otherwise of the shopping experience by pressing the appropriate button, was gone.
it was of course a means of inadvertently spreading the virus.

if the removal was a local initiative, I say well done to the guy who used his head & came up with the idea.
maybe it was Lidl head office initiative - an example of German attention to detail.
in any event - well done, Lidl.
 

devonish

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An excellent idea to name and shame and also to recognise those businesses which are looking after their employees. It's a tough time, and I would ask everyone to do their bit, I was reminded today by my daughter that as we all get absorbed in our own preparations that foodbanks are seeing a huge downturn in donations so, the next time you're in your local supermarket buy some extra tinned food, rice or whatever and drop it off at your nearest food bank.
 

raetsel

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An excellent idea to name and shame and also to recognise those businesses which are looking after their employees. It's a tough time, and I would ask everyone to do their bit, I was reminded today by my daughter that as we all get absorbed in our own preparations that foodbanks are seeing a huge downturn in donations so, the next time you're in your local supermarket buy some extra tinned food, rice or whatever and drop it off at your nearest food bank.
Well said.
To be honest, I didn't even know if a food bank existed here in Enniskillen until recently or where it was. It exists obviously but I'm still not clear where it is, or where I donate. I will check it out.
Have you seen this? It is an astonishing film from the most vilified film director in Britain, who will be a national hero in another 100 years.
Prophets in their own country?

 

Baron von Biffo

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small point.
I was in Lidl in Ennis yesterday,
& noticed that the unit at the exit door, where you expressed your satisfaction or otherwise of the shopping experience by pressing the appropriate button, was gone.
it was of course a means of inadvertently spreading the virus.

if the removal was a local initiative, I say well done to the guy who used his head & came up with the idea.
maybe it was Lidl head office initiative - an example of German attention to detail.
in any event - well done, Lidl.
I'm told that there's a branch of burgerking opened in Portlaoise now and apparently the staff don't give you your drinks but, for some bizarre reason, the make customers fill their own from a touch-screen vending machine.

A disgusting prospect even without the virus.
 

Lumpy Talbot

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The BBC has committed to publishing regularly positive stories of how people are helping each other out around the world. It is quite heartening, and the importance of the work of people on the front line in health services is being emphasised. If you were feeling a bit down this is a good article to read;

 

Sync

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