SPS Sainsbury's Section

Member Wellbeing: looking after yourself during COVID-19

We’re all adapting to new ways of working and living – with no clear idea yet of how long this ‘new normal’ might last. We know that some of our members might be struggling – whether emotionally or financially – during these unsettling time, so we have decided to create this Member Wellbeing page, to help point you in the right direction if you need extra support.

Many people will be worried about their finances – whether they’re working or not. If you’re worried about day-to-day living costs, the Money Advice Service website tells you more about the financial support that is available from the Government, and also has useful tips on managing your money during the crisis.

If you still work for the Company, you can make use of our Employee Assistance Programme, provided by Validium, which offers financial information and debt counselling. The service is completely confidential and free of charge to all Sainsbury’s colleagues. Support can be accessed at all times through a freephone number 0800 027 7777 or 0330 123 9653 from mobiles with contract minutes. If you’re calling from outside the UK, please dial +44 141 271 7155.

If you are struggling financially, you could also contact GroceryAid, the national charity for the grocery industry. They’ve put together a web-page of advice and support about Covid-19. They also provide a free, confidential helpline for anyone who is working or has worked within the grocery trade, regardless of length of service: simply call 08088 021 122 or visit the GroceryAid website to access their online chat.

As far as your pension, don’t panic over the current market downturn. Your pension is a long-term investment, so try to avoid making hasty decisions about moving your money. The Pensions Regulator, the Financial Conduct Authority and the Money & Pensions Service have created a joint letter, which you can read here, which reminds members to be very careful when exchanging their defined benefit pension for more flexible options.

However, as well as the financial toll, the pandemic has also had a mental toll on many of us. If you find you’re struggling with your mood, take a look at the Mind website or the NHS website, which have some useful links.

The pandemic has made us all think about how our loved ones would cope financially if the worst was to happen. We have produced a PDF that summarises the benefits payable to Sainsbury’s colleagues in the event of their death in service and provides links to the relevant forms. You can read it here. If you haven’t written a Will yet, or need to update your Will, we have been able to secure a Will-writing discount for colleagues. You can find out more on our reward gateway: https://sainsburys.rewardgateway.co.uk/