Safe Return to Work
Employees should still where possible work from home. However, the Government have launched a series of webinars for different industries to assist businesses on getting back to work safely where possible.
The full series is available here:
The webinars cover the following:
- Working safely in factories, plants and warehouses
- Working safely in restaurants offering takeaway or delivery
- Working safely in shops and branches
- Working safely in vehicles
- Working safely in labs and research facilities
- Working safely in offices and contact centres
- Working safely in construction and outdoor work
- Working safely in other people’s homes.
Key updates from the Government guidance are as follows:-
- Advice for sectors including; factories, warehouses, food, retail and offices has been produced covering a variety of workplaces and these are available at: www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19
- Shops and branches – the Government states that non-food stores, fashion stores and other types of non exempt retail can re-open from 15th June. You can see more information on guidance for re-opening here: www.gov.uk/guidance/working-safely-during-coronavirus-covid-19/shops-and-branches
- Restaurants, cafés, pubs, bars, etc. need to stay closed, but may be able to provide a takeaway/delivery service dependent on their activity and licence if applicable.
More than one guide may apply to your workplace and businesses are required to put the advised measures in place to ensure that workplaces are as safe as possible to re-open, once the restrictions relating to your business are lifted.
These measures follow the on-going Government advice to keep 2 metres apart and undertake thorough handwashing for 20 seconds, along with surface cleaning and practical safety measures appropriate for each type of workplace.
Businesses and employees must still follow the Government guidance for people who need to self-isolate. This includes individuals who have symptoms of COVID-19 as well as those who live in a household with someone who has symptoms. The Government guidance on this is here:
Employers have a legal responsibility to protect employees and others (such as visitors, contractors and customers) from potential risks to their health and safety. As such they will need to carry out a health and safety risk assessment.
Employers, the self-employed and people in control of premises, such as landlords, also have a duty to protect people by identifying and controlling risks associated with legionella, also known as Legionnaires’ disease.
If your building was closed or has reduced occupancy during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, water system stagnation can occur due to lack of use, increasing the risks of Legionnaires’ disease. Further information from the Health and Safety Executive is available here:
Further information on COVID-19 and the Government measures in place to respond to COVID-19 and to help businesses during this time are available at: www.gov.uk/coronavirus.