Coronavirus: MP Nadia Whittome returns to care work

Image source, Nadia Whittome
Image caption,
Nadia Whittome said care workers "work tirelessly to support communities" but "rarely receive recognition and pay that reflects their contribution"

An MP has returned to her pre-Parliament job as a care worker to help deal with the coronavirus pandemic.

Nottingham East MP Nadia Whittome said she would donate the salary from her part-time role at a retirement village to a local Covid-19 support fund.

The 23-year-old Labour politician said she was doing it because "the care system is in serious danger of falling apart" during the outbreak.

The NHS has called for former health workers to return to their jobs.

'Recognition rare'

Ms Whittome, Britain's youngest MP, said: "Social care is in absolute crisis.

"I'm worried it is going to mean that the social care system is going to fall apart at the seams - so I'm pitching in."

She also called for an "emergency" universal basic income and mass testing.

Image caption,
Ms Whittome will be returning to work part-time at a retirement village

Ms Whittome returned to work at Lark Hill retirement village in Clifton, Nottingham, on Tuesday.

She will be working in personal care - making people food, feeding them and administering medication, once retrained.

She previously worked there for just under two years from the age of 19.

"We need care workers and me returning is an act of solidarity with my colleagues who are struggling under increased pressure and are already working really hard," she told the BBC.

"It's about looking after each other as best we can and checking on our neighbours who are elderly or high risk."

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said about 7,500 health workers had answered the call to return to work from Monday.

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