Any decisions to re-open a workplace must be in done in compliance with the Government and public health advice. Employers, in consultation with the nominated worker representative(s), must take the following steps:
Employers and workers should have regular engagement about COVID-19 and preventative measures in the workplace. Information and guidance should be provided by employers to workers, which should include the signs and symptoms of COVID-19, how it spreads, cleaning routines and waste disposal as well as advice on hand and respiratory hygiene, physical distancing, use of Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) and work equipment where relevant.
Adherence to these measures will only be achieved if employers and workers have a shared responsibility to implement the measures in their place of work. A collaborative approach to the implementation of such measures is essential to achieve success. Each workplace should appoint at least one lead worker representative charged with ensuring that COVID-19 measures are strictly adhered to in their place of work. The person(s) undertaking the role must receive the necessary training and have a structured framework to follow within the organisation to be effective in preventing the spread of the virus. Employers should have regular and meaningful engagement with their worker representative, workers and/or their recognised Trade Union or other representatives about the measures being put in place to address the occupational exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace.
Employers should provide a COVID-19 induction training for all workers. The number of worker representatives for COVID-19 appointed will, ideally, be proportionate to the number of workers in the workplace and this person should be clearly identifiable in the workplace. Employers and worker representatives should work together to ensure that all the actions are fully adhered to in order to ensure the suppression of COVID-19 in the workplace.