After home, the one place that people spend most of their time at is their workplace. And since most of their energies and productive hours are devoted to work, the workplace has a significant impact on their physical and psychological wellbeing. It’s no wonder why companies invest massive resources to make the workplace enabling, comfortable, and above all, safe for their workforce.
But amid the ongoing pandemic, even the safest of workplaces are making their employees avoid coming to the office and work remotely. As Covid-19 tightens its grip on Pakistan, people in many professions are enjoying the liberty of working remotely, from the comfort and safety of their homes. But not all workers can have the privilege of remote working, no matter how risky the situation is outside.
On top of such professions is that of medical and health workers. Doctors, paramedical staff, and others working at hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare facilities are required to be at work in person as the care they provide can’t be given remotely. Their jobs, without a doubt, put them at a great health risk, bringing them face-to-face with the deadly virus on a daily basis.
But, besides people in the healthcare industry, there are people in many other professions whose exposure to the pandemic is also significant. Technicians, cab drivers, delivery riders, and sanitation staff are just some examples of the people going out of their homes daily to serve others and keep the country functioning. With the term ‘frontline workers’ being closely associated with healthcare professionals, efforts of people from the said professions often get overlooked.
One group whose efforts also go mostly unheeded is the bankers who, in spite of not being considered as frontline workers, put themselves at risk to keep the country’s economy in motion and to make the rest of us facilitated and safe. The critical role of bankers cannot be denied over the past year as unlike other people, they have been reporting to their jobs to provide the rest of us with uninterrupted banking services.
Every day, a vast number of bankers, who do not have the luxury of working from home despite perilous times, have to deal with hundreds of customers to facilitate them in their financial transactions. This increases their exposure to the deadly virus many times and in spite of countless cases of infections and casualties within the banking staff, they continue to brave the storm to provide us with the banking services we need.
This makes bankers the unsung frontline heroes of our national battle against the deadly novel coronavirus. This bravery of theirs must be acknowledged and appreciated by the customers as well as the government. What we as banking customers can do is extend our appreciation and support for their tireless and brave work as we transact through them. We must also not forget to practice social distancing and strictly follow SOPs when in bank branches to reduce Covid-19 exposure of the banking staff.
The government, on the other hand, may start considering them as frontline workers and, maybe, also prioritize them for the Covid-19 vaccination. While healthcare workers, the elderly, and people at health risks may still be prioritized for vaccination, professionals like bankers and other public dealing workers may also follow them on the priority list. This will show that their efforts are recognized and they get the incentive they truly deserve.
As almost all bank jobs are customer-facing and classified as essential services, the bankers have no choice but to face the full impact of the lethal third wave. In times like these, the least we can do is acknowledge the heroic efforts of the banking staff, applaud them for what they are doing, and to support them by being cooperative. The need of the hour is to calm our nerves and cause actions driven by collaboration and concern for the safety of all frontline workers.