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Returning the Workplace to Safe Operation 

by Michelle Jones, Deborah Cushing

Published: May, 2020

Submission: May, 2020


This is the first in a two part series on 'Returning the Workplace to Safe Operation. Part two will be posted on Tuesday, May 19. 

Part 1: New occupational health and safety requirements to ensure your workplace is safe from the spread or introduction of COVID-19

Canadian provinces and territories are now beginning the gradual process of reopening the economy in the wake of COVID-19. In B.C., on May 6, 2020, the Provincial Government announced its four phase Restart Plan. Phase 1 is already in effect where essential services have been permitted to continue to operate in consultation with WorkSafeBC and in compliance with public health orders from the Provincial Health Officer. In Phase 2, which begins mid-May, and the remaining two phases, more organizational sectors will be permitted to gradually reopen or expand operations, provided that they do so in compliance with enhanced protocols aligned with public health and safety guidelines.

This blog post will address employers’ health and safety obligations and, in particular, the steps employers should take prior to reopening their workplaces, and then going forward to ensure compliance with WorkSafeBC guidance and directives and public health orders. Subsequent blog posts will address other employment issues related to reopening the workplace including recalling your employees and dealing with refusals to work. 

 Click here to read Michelle S. Jones and Deborah Cushing's full article.

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