There are so many emails and ongoing social media and news articles being published about COVID-19 that it has become somewhat confusing for many of our clients and fellow businesses. Some receivers of this email may be our clients and others businesses that we have had an interaction with through numerous mechanisms. In times like this I believe that as businesses we have a responsibility to provide assistance in any way we can to other businesses and support each other in what will be challenging times for all of us. Our core business has always been to provide advice in the Quality, Health and Safety (risk and compliance) space and providing businesses with a clear understanding of their responsibilities. This is very new territory for all of us, but I am lucky to have a number of great team members who have spent a few days compiling the attached documents.
We are fielding many questions from businesses big and small relating to:
- “what do I need to tell my employees ?”
- “what are my responsibilities as an employer ?”
- “what are my rights as an employer ?”
- “what are the rights of my employees ?”
I have attached two guides (in Word format so you can add your own logos and company names etc ) that may assist that have been written in a way that with minor adjustments you may be able to utilise them to effectively communicate with and consult with your employees so that they have a better understanding and this may alleviate or assist in alleviating another stressor or concern they may have. (disclaimer – the guides have been developed from sources of fact and are not designed to replace legal or medical advice – they are designed to provide a simple English interpretation of the advice provided by the government and the regulators)
QSE05-REF-21 How to Manage Impact of Covid-19 Employees
This guide is designed to provide guidance to employees regarding their rights and your rights as an employer and other elements of information – Note if you are going to utilise you will need to read to ensure that it meets the needs of your business as it is has been developed as a generic document that can be applied universally
QSE05-REF-20-How to Manage Impact of COVID-19 Employers
This guide is designed to provide guidance to employers regarding their rights and employer specific information – Note if you are going to utilise you will need to read to ensure that it meets the needs of your business as it is has been developed as a generic document that can be applied universally
These types of situations tend to bring out the best and worst in people, and in companies, and I know many of you will have received numerous emails from companies offering small snippets of advice and then asking you to contact them for further advice at a cost. This type of predatory marketing is just leveraging on peoples fears and in most cases resulting in even greater confusion. We have attempted to provide documents that you can utilise simply to assist through this time.
One of the big trends is for companies to utilise working from home as a mechanism to restrict the spread of the virus and this is considered an effective approach in many situations. As an employer what you must understand is that when an employee works from home for any reason, then their home (in respect to the requirements of the WHS Regs and WHS Act) becomes a workplace and the employer remains responsible for the health safety and wellbeing of their workers when working from home. I have also attached a number of documents that can be utilised to assist in managing the risks associated with your employees working from home and provide a formal mechanism to ensure that the risks associated with working from home are assessed and managed. These documents are not designed to stop you from allowing employees to work from home, but to ensure that you understand the risks and you are able to manage them as well as ensuring your employees also understand their responsibilities when working from home.
Again these are not provided as a substitute for getting your own independent advice but to assist in giving you additional information and advice you may not have previously considered.
As previously stated, the AWCI QLD continue to provide you with updated information as it comes to hand.