Several women who have stayed in Covid quarantine hotels in the UK have said they have been sexually harassed by G4S security guards.
The women had been in quarantine for 10 days in hotels after returning from Red List countries and told BBC News men working for the security firm harassed them.
One claimed that a guard acted out sex while they were alone in a lifetime, while another claimed that a member of security staff asked him for a “hug” and said that he wanted to take a selfie with her.
The government has hired private security companies to ensure hotel guests adhere to quarantine rules.
Marie Sidwell, a 28-year-old nurse from Nottingham who returned after working through the pandemic in Dubai, ordered Amazon packages while staying at the Pentahotel in Reading.
The items were delivered to her room by G4S guards, and some of the packages were brought to her room by a G4S employee. Marie said he asked her if she played cricket and said “she reminded him of someone”.
She said, âHe said, ‘Can I take a picture of us together?’ and I said, “No, I’m in my pajamas and I’m supposed to be in quarantine,” and he said, “It’s okay, I’m negative.”
“I took a step back to my room and he walked over to me and said, ‘Can I have a hug?’ and he was heading towards my room, I was quite panicked and I quickly closed the door.
“There was a peephole and I watched him walk down the hall, then he came back and stopped outside my door. I could see him standing there.”
Marie said she called the hotel reception to complain. She was told that they were going to investigate and that she would not see him again. Yet the same guard brought a Deliveroo package to his room several days later.
“I couldn’t really believe it, I was so shocked and just closed the door right away,” she told the BBC, speaking from her bedroom on May 28.
âI called my mom and she says I have to report it but I’m scared to do it like I told them before and he’s still in my room. I feel very uncomfortable. They know that I am alone and the hotel is full of male security guards. “
After hearing that the guards had cards that allowed them to open any guest’s door, she said he was afraid someone would enter her room.
She had to stay at the hotel for six more nights until she was free to wash up on May 30 and said she was too afraid to leave her room, even to exercise.
G4S said it expects the highest standards of conduct from staff and has investigated the allegations of wrongdoing.
Another woman, Katherine Godolphin, 46, had a “disgusting” experience at the Heathrow Bath Road Holiday Inn after returning from work on a conservation and anti-poaching project in Zimbabwe.
âHe was just disgusting, he made me bump in the elevator,â she said. “It was the first time. I
âI was a little shocked and it was uncomfortable but I thought it was probably an isolated incident so I didn’t complain to anyone.
She claims the same man accompanied her on her exercise break the next day when he started to feel between her legs in an elevator. He said his testicles were burning and he had to “empty” them.
âAnd I was just absolutely horrified,â she said. He stayed with me outside and I had to go upstairs with him.
“They then walk you back to your room. It wasn’t pleasant at all. I put the internal lock on, because at that point I was obviously very nervous.”
In a statement, G4S said: âWe expect the highest standards of conduct from our staff and we do not tolerate behaviors that undermine the good work of our teams, who continue to play an important role in the national response to the pandemic.
“If we are made aware of any wrongdoing, strong procedures are in place to ensure that the employee is removed from the site while an investigation is conducted by G4S and, where appropriate, the police.”
Several other women also came forward to tell BBC News that they had been sexually harassed by G4S staff while staying alone in quarantine hotels, including one who was told by a guard that she “smoked at home. hot “.