We have adopted the guidelines put in place by BC Center of Disease Control. The goal in creating this protocol is to keep staff and clients as safe as possible during the COVID-19 pandemic. Please refer to http://covid-19.bccdc.ca/ for current, up to date information and best-practice protocols.
Part 1 – Facility Readiness:
We are implementing a new traffic flow to help guide the movement of those entering and exiting the premises. Where appropriate, eye level signage and floor decals will be posted to encourage physical distancing while moving throughout the building.
Changes in Room Occupancy
To comply with the guidelines for physical distancing, the following list outlines the new room capacities for different workspaces. Signage is posted outside of these areas; however, we advise all users to practice discretion when entering these spaces:
- Boardroom – Maximum occupancy = 6
- 6 Person Breakout – Maximum occupancy = 2
- 4 Person Breakout – Maximum occupancy = 1
- Lunchroom – Maximum occupancy = 6
- Mailroom – Maximum occupancy = 1
- Multipurpose room – Closed
- Boardroom – Maximum occupancy = 4
- Kitchen – Maximum occupancy = 1
- Lunchroom – Closed
- Mailroom – Maximum occupancy = 1
- ICBC plate/Batching room – Maximum occupancy = 1
- Fleet room – Maximum occupancy = 1
- Lunchroom – Maximum occupancy = 2
- Decal room – Maximum occupancy = 1
When returning to work, please note the following building adaptations we’ve made to prepare for re-entry and to help our community feel comfortable in our space:
- Installation of “sanitation stations” near high-touch surfaces.
- Installation of soap dispensers at every sink.
- Installation of automatic paper towel dispensers in kitchens and washrooms where required.
- POS and photo copier/printers will be protected and sanitized after each use.
- Chairs have been removed.
- Plexiglass has been installed at desks where clients will be served.
- Removal of client coffee/water station at Uptown.
- Removal of client “tools” at Uptown and Shelbourne.
- A maximum of 3 clients will be permitted inside Uptown and Shelbourne at any one time.
- Redbrick will open to the public when plexiglass and proper measures have been put in place.
- Staffing levels will be reduced by approximately 50% at all locations.
- Employees will be repositioned throughout the office to ensure physical distancing.
- Eye-level signage and floor decals to encourage building “flow” and physical distancing.
- Cleaning staff have increased priority to “High-Touch” surfaces with cleaning being done every evening.
- Deep cleaning will be completed twice per week at each location.
- Nighttime security checks have been added to Shelbourne.
Part 2 – Personal Health and Eliminating the Spread of COVID-19:
As much as possible, all employees must always adhere to the general precautions to avoid the spread of COVID-19 including physical distancing measures by maintaining a physical distance of two metres from others.
Employees are encouraged to disinfect their own workstations and other high-contact areas and items regularly with the hygiene products provided.
If you are healthy, employees are not required to wear masks at this time, however that is your choice and people wearing masks should be respected.
If Employees Present COVID-19 Illness Symptoms While at Home
Employees may be excused from work without requiring a doctor’s note.
Employees must report respiratory illness to employer and cannot return to work for at least 14 days following the onset of cough, fever, fatigue, sore throat, runny nose, difficulty breathing and/or shortness of breath.
Employees may return prior to 14 days if they have been assessed by a medical professional and a doctor’s note is provided, and it is determined that they DO NOT have COVID-19.
If an employee has known close contact with someone who had COVID-19 as per CDC guidelines, they must self-quarantine for a 14-day period.
Employees can use the COVID-19 self-assessment tool at BC COVID-19 Self-Assessment Tool to help determine if further assessment or testing for COVID-19 is needed; contact 8-1-1 if further health advice is required; and 9-1-1 if it is an emergency.
If an employee requests to take an unscheduled day off (PTO or vacation), they can expect to answer a series of questions to determine if it is a “sick” day. If an employee is not comfortable providing this information to their manager, they will be referred to HR.
If Employees Develop COVID-19 ILLness Symptoms While at Work
Employees should go home right away where possible. If unable to leave immediately, the symptomatic employee should:
- Separate themselves into an area away from others.
- Maintain a distance of two metres from others.
- Use a tissue or mask to cover their nose and mouth while they wait to be picked up.
- Remaining employees must clean and disinfect the space where the employee was separated and any areas used by them (e.g., office, bathroom, common areas).
- If concerned, contact 8-1-1 or the local public health unit to seek further advice.
- If the employee is assessed by a medical professional and a doctor’s note is provided and it is determined that they DO NOT have COVID-19, they may return to the office once symptoms resolve.
- If the employee has not been assessed by a medical professional, you must self-isolate for a minimum of 14-days, and until the symptoms resolve.
Return to work after diagnosis of COVID-19
We prohibit all our employees from reporting to work if they have COVID-19. They may return to work if:
- Fever completely gone AND improved respiratory symptoms (cough, difficulty breathing) AND negative results from the public authority’s COVID-19 testing protocol (to date = two negative tests 24 hours apart).
- It should be noted that return-to-work conditions are an evolving aspect of COVID-19. We will update these as recommended by government authorities.
- A deep clean will be scheduled immediately upon learning of an employee who has COVID-19.
Megson FitzPatrick has taken the following steps to adhere to public guidelines on physical distancing:
- Instructing employees to work a minimum of two metres apart.
- Reconfiguring how the workplace is set up.
- Using technological applications instead of in-person meetings.
- Allowing employees to work from home where possible.
No Visitors in the Office
No children, family members, friends or anyone else who is not an employee of Megson FitzPatrick and only those given permission, are allowed in the office.
Each employee will be provided with a face mask. It will not be mandatory to wear facemasks in the office except in any situation where social distancing of two meters is not possible. Staff are, however, encouraged to wear face masks as frequently as possible.
Gloves from outside of the office are not allowed as they can carry the virus inside the office. Disposable gloves that are used in the office and discarded are permitted unless the gloves can be washed.
Employees will have access to surface disinfectant and paper towels to wipe down their desk.
Megson FitzPatrick will supply individual hand sanitizer to each employee.
Above and beyond what cleaning staff do, each employee will be responsible for sanitizing their own workstations at the start and the end of the day.
Sanitize Common Areas
Employees are responsible for wiping down photocopiers, coffee machines or any other common equipment after each use. Wipe all door handles that you touch and chairs and surface areas in common areas including lunchrooms and meeting rooms. Fridges can be used to store food but only if staff wipe off any containers when putting them into the fridge. Basically, just wipe everything you touch!!
After due consideration the company believes it would be discriminatory to dis-allow individuals to use public transit if that is their regular means of transportation. At minimum if staff are to take public transit, they should wear masks and they should sanitize their hands before entering the workplace building.
Part 3 – Additional Resources and Works Consulted
- B.C. Order from the Provincial Health Officer
- WorkSafeBC: Preventing exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace
- B.C. COVID-19 response update
- B.C Orders Notice & Guidance
- B.C. COVID-19 Self-Assessment
- B.C. Centre for Disease Control