As Coronavirus is now increasing globally and the spread of the virus is growing daily there are increasing concerns for employers and employees alike.
Whereas we cannot foresee just how severely this outbreak will impact on individual businesses we can mitigate some of the fears surrounding work expectations. Employers have a duty of care under the ‘Health and Safety at Work Act 1974’ and therefore should take steps to protect their workforce.
Communication to your staff plays a vital role in keeping the workforce up to date and will help allay any immediate fears. Regular updates will ensure that all your workforce is fully aware of expectations and processes to follow over the forthcoming months.
Hygiene – Encourage your staff to wash their hands regularly and ensure supplies of soap and disposal hand towels are made available. Outline the symptoms to be aware of and process to follow if they feel they may be infected or have come into contact with someone who is infected.
Risk Assessments – should be carried out within businesses to ensure that they have the right policies and procedures in place to deal with absence.
Absence – Re-confirm the procedure steps to your managers so that absence can be reported and managed i.e. sickness, self-isolation, bereavement, caring for an independent, travel etc.
Absence reporting – re-iterate the guidelines to staff for awareness
Sick Pay – the Government have announced emergency legislation plans to be passed imminently entitling those eligible to SSP from day one. Statutory sick pay is currently set at £94.25 per week.
Confidentiality – under GDPR employers must ensure that employee data remains confidential. Grievances may be lodged if situations are not handled delicately so ensure your process takes care of this.
The risks will inevitably continue to change as we face new phases of the virus spread so be sure to continue to update your staff.
If you would like any assistance implementing any of the above or have a question that isn’t covered please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone me on 07901 993 143