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Stood down security officers at Launceston Airport have been told they will only be reinstated after paying for their own COVID-19 tests.

The security officers were stood down several months ago, and with the reduction in JobKeeper, have been struggling to make ends meet.

Yet their employer ISS Facility Services is mandating they present a negative COVID-19 test before they return to work, despite the fact the state government is no longer covering the expense for asymptomatic persons.

“This is just ridiculous. These essential workers want nothing more than to get back to work, yet ISS is just making it harder,” said Damien Davie, United Workers Union spokesperson for Property Services.

“Anyone who goes for a test and doesn’t have symptoms now must pay $200 out of their own pocket. This is because it is highly unlikely that Tasmanians will have contracted it in the community and the Government no longer sees it as a great concern.

“By that logic, if these were government jobs, people would just return directly to work.

“If the company wants to have everyone checked, then the company should cough up the cash themselves, rather than push already struggling workers to the brink.

“This is just very on-brand for ISS, who have also announced they’ll be cutting 30 per cent of their security officers nationwide, yet have failed to engage in a fair and meaningful redundancy process.”