Train station worker dies with coronavirus after being spat at while working on the front lines

Evie Breese@Evie_Breese
Tuesday 12 May 2020 11:15
news
(PA/ Indy100)

Belly Mujinda, who has underlying respiratory problems, was working at London Victoria train station when she was spat at by a member of the public claiming to have coronavirus.

Within days, Belly Mujinga, 47, fell ill. She died on 5 April after being admitted to Barnet Hospital and put on a ventilator.

Her funeral was attended by 10 people.

British Transport Police has now launched an investigation into the assault which happened at Victoria Station on 22 March while Mujinga and a colleague were on the station concourse. A member of the public who said he had Covid-19 spat and coughed at her and a colleague, who also fell ill.

This heartbreaking case has highlighted the vulnerability of frontline workers to the virus.

Which has led people to ask why she was still on the frontline despite being vulnerable.

Some have even claimed that perpetrator should be tried for "manslaughter" or “murder,” though it is impossible to know whether this incident was the source of Mujinga's infection.

The incident has been reported by the Union Transport Salaried Staffs' Association (TSSA) to the Railways Inspectorate for investigation and is taking legal advice on the situation.

Manuel Cortes, General Secretary of the TSSA, said that the death “wasn’t inevitable.”

As a vulnerable person in the ‘at risk’ category, and her condition known to her employer, there are questions about why she wasn’t stood down from frontline duties early on in this pandemic.

The statement continues;

Rather than talking about the easing the lockdown, the government must first ensure that the right precautions and protections have been taken so that more lives are not lost.

Cortes said that the families of all frontline workers, rather than only those working in health and care, should receive the £60,000 payment promised by the government to the survivors of those who have died.

The British Transport Police have asked anyone who has any information on the incident to contact BTP by texting 61016 or calling 0800 40 50 40 and quoting reference 359 of 11/05/20.

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