Covid “death jobs” have been identified in new analysis showing that workers on zero hours contracts were twice as likely to be killed by the virus.
The TUC said workers on a contract that does not guarantee regular hours or income or casual work, and those in low-paid self-employment, have been more at risk of infection.
Process, plant and machine operatives were found to have the highest age-adjusted Covid-19 mortality rate at 34 per 100,000 people.
The roles also had one of the highest rates of insecure employment at 17.2%.
Next most at risk were those in caring, leisure and service jobs at 27 deaths for every 100,000 workers.
The Covid-19 male mortality rate in insecure occupations was 51 per 100,000 people aged 20-64, compared with 24 per 100,000 in less insecure occupations, said the union.
TUC General secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Too many workers are trapped on zero-hours contracts or in other sorts of insecure work, and are hit by a triple whammy of endemic low pay, few workplace rights and low or no sick pay.
“Ministers must urgently raise statutory sick pay to the level of the real living wage, and make sure everyone can get it, including those on zero-hours contracts and other forms of insecure work.
“If people can’t observe self-isolation when they need to, the virus could rebound. No-one should have to choose between doing the right thing and putting food on the table.”
It comes as new data showed catching Covid-19 leaves sufferers at up to ten times the risk of brain blood clots than taking the AstraZeneca vaccine.
Oxford University analysis of 500,000 US patients showed 39 in every million developed cerebral venous thrombosis (CVT) after diagnosis.
It comes after UK regulators recommended different jabs for under-30s in response to data showing four in every million people given a dose of the Oxford-made jab developed a clot.
Latest UK data showed 30 more deaths were recorded yesterday(Thur). Some 117,835 first vaccine doses and 343,783 second doses were administered on Wednesday.
Ex-PM Gordon Brown is among 175 former world leaders and Nobel laureates calling on US President Joe Biden to waive intellectual property rules for Covid vaccines.
It says without such a move poorer nations will not be able to vaccinate their populations until 2024.
Latest NHS Test and Trace figures show national contact tracing teams only reached 56% of contacts within 24 hours – down from 67% the previous week.
The proportion contacted within three days was 70%, down from 90% in February.
Separate data from Public Health England suggests most positive rapid coronavirus tests taken since 8 March appear to have returned a correct result.
Some 82% of lateral flow tests sent off for a confirmatory PCR test returned the same positive result.
The data, given to the BBC, did not however indicate how many people were wrongly told they did not have the virus.