COVID-19: Change to Alert Level – We are here to support your business

COVID-19 / 12 August 2020
COVID-19: Change to Alert Level – We are here to support your business

As we head into Alert Level 3 for Auckland and Alert level 2 for the rest of the country, at Copeland Ashcroft Law we are here to support you and your business with the challenges we all face in employment, health and safety and immigration.

Our team are nationwide and on hand to respond with advice on what the alert levels mean for your business and employees.

Are you eligible for free advice?

Funding for our services is available via the Regional Business Partner Network (RBPN) for eligible employers, per our article here.  Read more on that here:

We are also offering the following fixed price policies, until 31 August 2020:

  • COVID-19 Temporary Operations Policy – $500 (plus GST & disbursements)
  • Working From Home Policy -– $500 (plus GST & disbursements)

Here are some initial practical steps employers can take:

Specific health and safety requirements are in place, and workplaces will need to consider and implement changes to ensure these are met, considering, per WorkSafe guidance, revisiting the following steps:

  • Communicate with workers and identify whether any are:
    • in the ‘at risk’ category
    • required to self-isolate
    • unwell with covid-19 symptoms
    • unable to work due to childcare arrangements
    • unable to work for any other COVID-19 related reason
  • Check industry guidance on safe work, the Ministry of Health website and
  • Identify and purchase required PPE
  • Make a hygiene plan including a cleaning and sanitising schedule
  • Consider what daily health checks will be performed, eg taking temperatures
  • Check your skills and experience with the returning workforce are adequate
  • Prepare any health and safety training required e.g. wearing/disposal of PPE, cleaning, return to work refreshers on high risk tasks
  • Decide how you will communicate instructions and processes to workers
  • Consider methods for worker travel that maintain physical distance (1 metre in workplace, 2 metres outside the workplace).
  • Maintain a contact tracing register
  • Consider how separation will occur, for example, dividing the workplace into zones, staggering shifts and breaks, putting up barriers
  • Consider business continuity if any self-isolation is required due to COVID contact
  • Conduct pre-work workplace checks e.g, air quality checks, equipment servicing
  • Designate responsibilities for monitoring these measures, for example:
    • managing stock of PPE and hygiene goods
    • maintaining the contract tracing register
    • auditing of the cleaning schedule
    • keeping up to date with changes and industry recommendations
  • Assess and implement additional health and safety controls needed
  • Prepare a declaration for workers confirming their disclosure of key information to you, and requiring their compliance with your processes as well as the Government’s requirements outside the workplace

We recommend implementing a Temporary Operations Policy to cover this, and if you have people working from home, a Working From Home Policy.

Disclaimer: We remind you that while this article provides commentary on employment law and health and safety topics, it should not be used as a substitute for legal or professional advice for specific situations. Please seek legal advice from your lawyer for any questions specific to your workplace.

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