As the number of Covid-19 cases continues to rise in the UK, the UK Government is facing widespread calls to implement stricter Covid restrictions.
In Wales, Government guidance remains that employees should continue to work at home where possible. This guidance has not yet been re-introduced in England by the UK Government.
However, with a sharp increase in reported Covid-19 cases in recent weeks, employers must ensure that they do not let their guard down when it comes to having robust Covid-19 measures in the workplace. Despite the current lack of national restrictions in place, the duty to take reasonably practicable steps to manage the risk of Covid-19 spreading in the workplace continues.
How to prevent Covid-19 spreading in the workplace
- Regularly update your health and safety risk assessment and do everything reasonably practicable to minimise the risks identified. You should actively monitor your assessment to ensure it remains effective and share the results of the risk assessment with your employees.
- Maintain hygiene standards in the workplace by frequently cleaning objects and surfaces such as door handles, taps and keyboards that are regularly touched. Consider providing hand sanitisers in multiple locations.
- Try to limit the time and number of employees in the workplace at any given time, and keep a daily record of those who attend the workplace. If practical, consider putting in place measures to reduce contact between employees such as screens or barriers to separate employees who sit face-to-face, or move desks apart to maintain a 2 metre distance between them, or have reduced occupancy in the workplace.
- Advise employees to stay at home if they feel under the weather, regardless of whether they show typical symptoms of Covid-19. Due to symptom similarities between the common cold and Covid-19, you should make sure employees who can work from home do so as soon as they start to feel unwell.
- Educate and encourage employees who have not yet received the Covid-19 vaccine to do so, and support them by offering paid leave for vaccination appointments and reasonable paid sick leave due to vaccine side-effects.
For a free, no obligation conversation about how we can help you with the above, please contact Fflur Jones on [email protected] / 02920829117