Stevenage security guard alleges firm withholding sick pay after injury

PUBLISHED: 06:58 15 August 2018

Stevenage's Sean Kelly. Picture: Sean Kelly

Stevenage's Sean Kelly. Picture: Sean Kelly

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A security guard from Stevenage who says he has been left barely able to walk by an incident at work has accused his employer of failing to give him his full statutory sick pay.

Sean Kelly, 35, was working for Total Security at a Stevenage branch of Tesco at the time of the incident on June 2 last year.

He is preparing to launch legal action against Tesco – and has also furiously spoken out about how he says Total Security has treated him since his injury.

Sean’s left ankle is still seriously discoloured, more than a year later. He says he can barely hobble on it.

Speaking to the Comet, he said he had been accused of “deciding to be unwell”. He also claimed the firm had withheld 20 per cent of his statutory sick pay and cited “tax reasons” for doing so.

“I need help here,” an emotional Sean told this paper.

“I’ve got no money. I’m trying my best to do what’s right – I keep doing what people tell me, but no matter where I turn I get screwed.

“The more and more I try to do things right and live by the law, the more these people are trying to stamp on me.”

Sean alleges that Total Security has shown him “pure contempt” since his injury, and accused him of lying about it.

He claimed the company has paid him below the required level to the extent that he is living beneath the poverty line.

“They turned around and said to me: ‘We really shouldn’t give money to people who decide to be unwell’,” he said.

“They’ve told me I will get what they give me and that I should not question that. This is contempt.

“My partner’s working from 7am to 7pm, just to pay our rent.

“I normally should say to her I have such-and-such an amount at a given time – but when I look at the account and there’s not, what do I do now? I strive to try.

“I went to my church and I cried. I don’t want money. I want to be able to say how I feel and put out how things really are. This is my daily life.”

Sean’s situation is particularly dire as he has had his application for the disability benefit PIP declined – a decision against which he is set to appeal.

Total Security declined to comment when contacted by the Comet on Monday, citing data protection and confidentiality issues – but said it had “made contact with the individual to discuss the matter”.

Sean told the Comet about an hour later that the company had sent him £200. The next day he said the company had told him this would be coming out of his sick pay over the next month.

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