Article 10 June 2021

We care about your personal safety

At Mitie, the safety and wellbeing of all our colleagues is our top priority.

In March, we wrote to you about the tragic death of Sarah Everard who was walking home in London on 3 March. Yesterday, 7 June, Met Police Officer Wayne Couzens, pleaded guilty to kidnapping and raping Sarah, and has accepted responsibility for her death.

Following our communication, many of you wrote back to us. So we feel it’s important to highlight the subject of personal safety again. This is even more important as we start to come out of lockdown and are able to socialise and enjoy the current warmer weather.

Unfortunately, Sarah’s case is not an anomaly. Women of all ages, races, and religions face violence every day. The horrifying realities are shown in these statistics:

  • Two women are killed by a current or former partner in England and Wales every week.
  • 207 women were killed in the year ending March 2020 in England, Scotland and Wales.
  • 97% of 18-24 year-old women, surveyed by UN Women UK, have experienced sexual harassment.
  • One in three women will experience domestic abuse in their lifetime.
  • More than 40,000 calls and contacts were made to the National Domestic Abuse Helpline in the first three months of 2020 alone.
  • An estimated 1.6 million women were victims of domestic abuse last year, more than double the number of men who suffered domestic abuse.

With over 27,000 women in our business, Sarah Everard’s murder is a stark reminder about the importance of personal safety and wellbeing and calling out behaviour that is threatening or inappropriate. We urge you to read and circulate our Personal Safety Guide and Domestic Abuse Support Guide. They contain valuable tips on how to stay safe, and how to tackle and report unwanted or threatening behaviour.

We’re exploring enhanced risk assessments for colleagues working late into the night and lone workers. We’re also trialling apps you can download that securely track your location as a further safety measure. We’ll update you on the outcomes of this shortly.

If you see, hear or experience anything that concerns you, don’t forget you can report this confidentially using the Speak Up online portal or phone 0800 374 199

You can also use our free and confidential Employee Assistance Programme for advice and support. Call 0800 1116 387 or go through the website – the login is mitiewell.

If you’re out and about, and see or hear anything that makes you feel under threat, you should dial 999 for immediate assistance. To report any non-urgent issues, you can call 101 or use Crimestoppers UK to report any concerns anonymously. 

Finally, please visit Refuge or call the free 24-Hour National Domestic Abuse Helpline on 0808 2000 247 for more information or support for those suffering from domestic abuse.

We realise personal safety issues can’t be ‘fixed’ overnight. Unfortunately, there is no magic answer. But we can reassure you that your safety, health and wellbeing is of paramount importance at Mitie. We can all take simple steps to look out for each other and make sure we all get home safely – whether that’s at the end of a shift, the end of a good night out, walking your dog, walking home or just going about your daily life. By looking out for each other, talking openly about these issues, and challenging poor behaviours, we can start to turn the tide on these horrific incidents.

Stay safe.