Policy for COVID-19
Exposure Prevention, Preparedness, and Response
Sidhu & Sons Nursery takes the health and safety of our employees very seriously. With the spread of the coronavirus or “COVID-19,” a respiratory disease caused by the SARS CoV-2 virus, we must remain vigilant in mitigating the outbreak. In order to be safe and maintain operations, we have developed this COVID-19 Exposure Prevention, Preparedness, and Response Policy.
This Policy is based on information available from the Work Safe BC at the time of its development, and is subject to change based on further information provided by the Work safe BC and other public officials. Sidhu & Sons Nursery may also amend this Policy based on operational needs.
I. Responsibilities of Managers and Supervisors
All managers and supervisors must be familiar with this Policy and be ready to answer questions from employees. Managers and supervisors must set a good example by following this Plan at all times. This involves practicing good personal hygiene and jobsite safety practices to prevent the spread of the virus. Managers and supervisors must encourage this same behavior from all employees.
II. Responsibilities of Employees
Sidhu & Sons Nursery is asking every one of our employees to help with our prevention efforts while at work. In order to minimize the spread of COVID-19 at our jobsite, everyone must play their part. As set forth below, Sidhu & Sons Nursery has instituted various housekeeping, social distancing, and other best practices at our jobsites. All employees must follow these. In addition, employees are expected to report to their managers or supervisors if they are experiencing signs or symptoms of COVID-19, as described below. If you have a specific question about this Plan or COVID-19, please ask your manager or supervisor. If they cannot answer the question, please contact head office.
Work Safe BC has provided the following control and preventative guidance for all workers, regardless of exposure risk:
- Frequently wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. When soap and running water are unavailable, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 70% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
- No handshaking or other close contact at work.
- Follow appropriate respiratory etiquette, which includes covering for coughs and sneezes.
In addition, employees must familiarize themselves with the symptoms of COVID-19, which include the following:
- Shortness of breath, difficulty breathing; and
- Early symptoms such as chills, body aches, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, nausea/vomiting, and runny nose.
If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, DO NOT GO TO WORK and call your supervisor and healthcare provider right away. Likewise, if you come into close contact with someone showing these symptoms, call your supervisor and healthcare provider right away.
III. Measures to reduce the risk
Sidhu & Sons Nursery has instituted the following protective measures at all worksites.
A. General Safety Policies and Rules
- Any employee/customer/visitor showing symptoms of COVID-19 will be asked to leave the jobsite and return home.
- During any in-person meetings, avoid gathering in groups of more than 6 people and participants must remain at least six (6) feet apart.
- Employees must avoid physical contact with others and shall direct others (co workers/customers/visitors) to increase personal space to at least six (6) feet, where possible.
- Employees will be encouraged to stagger breaks and lunches, if practicable, to reduce the size of any group at any one time in accordance with established occupancy limits.
- We understands that due to the nature of our work, access to running water for hand washing may be impracticable. In these situations, Sidhu & Sons Nursery will provide, if available, alcohol-based hand sanitizers.
- Employees should limit the use of co-workers’ tools and equipment. To the extent tools must be shared, Sidhu & Sons Nursery will provide alcohol-based sanitizer to clean tools before use. When cleaning tools and equipment, consult manufacturing recommendations for proper cleaning techniques and restrictions.
- Additionally all RTVs, Gators, Tractors, Forklifts, Trucks, Doorknobs, workshop, office, lunch rooms will be disinfected with alcohol-based sanitizers at either the end or beginning of each day.
- Employees are encouraged to use masks all the time when working together while loading trucks, filling racks and potting plants etc.
- Employees are encouraged to minimize ride-sharing. While in vehicles, employees must ensure adequate distancing or wear face mask/coverings.
- If practicable, each employee should use/drive the same vehicle or piece of equipment for entire shift.
- Workers should wash hands immediately before starting shift, going on break, before and after going to toilet and after completing shift with liquid soap or hand sanitizers.
- The number of visitors to the job site, or office, will be limited to only those necessary for operations and on the occupancy limit of job site.
- Main entrance signage will be posted indicating that workers and visitors with symptoms are restricted from entering the job site.
- Ensure Supervisors have trained for monitoring workers and workplace ensure policies and procedures are followed
- Visitors will be asked to follow social distancing protocol while on site.
- Site deliveries will be permitted but should be properly coordinated in line with the employer’s minimal contact and cleaning protocols. Delivery personnel should remain in their vehicles if at all possible.
C. Personal Protective Equipment and Work Practice Controls
- In addition to regular PPE for workers engaged in various tasks (fall protection, safety glasses, hearing protection), Sidhu & Sons Nursery will also provide:
- Face mask: Face coverings, homemade cloth mask can be worn if taken home and washed daily.
- If your mask get wet, soiled or damaged, replace it immediately.
- Surgical masks are single use items that should not be cleaned and reused.
- NOTE: The WORKSAFEBC is currently not recommending that healthy people wear N95 respirators to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Nevertheless, employees must wear N95 respirators if required by the work and if available.
IV. Job Site Cleaning and Disinfecting
Sidhu & Sons Nursery has instituted regular housekeeping practices, which include cleaning and disinfecting frequently used tools and equipment, and other elements of the work environment, where possible. Employees should regularly do the same in their assigned work areas.
- Work stations and break/lunchroom areas will be cleaned at least once a day and high-contact surfaces twice a day. Employees performing cleaning will be issued proper personal protective equipment (“PPE”), such as nitrile gloves & mask to protect them from cleaning chemicals.
- Portable toilets and bathrooms will be disinfected at least once a day.
- Vehicles and equipment/tools should be cleaned at least once per day and before change in operator or rider.
- Sidhu & Sons Nursery will ensure that any disinfection shall be conducted using a solution with at least 70% alcohol.
V. Jobsite Exposure Situations
- Employee Exhibits COVID-19 Symptoms
- If an employee exhibits COVID-19 symptoms, the employee will be asked to wash or sanitize their hands, be provided with a mask and be isolated in job site first aid room. The worker will be asked to go straight home and instructed to use “BC Covid-19 self – assessment tool” or call 811 for further guidance related to testing and self-isolation. If the worker is severely ill (eg. Difficulty breathing, chest pain) 911 will be called.
- Employee Tests Positive for COVID-19
- An employee who tests positive for COVID-19 will be directed to self-quarantine away from work. Employees that tested positive and are symptom free may return to work provided they have documentation from Health Officer/Health Provider clearing his or her return to work.
- Employee Has Close Contact with an Individual Who Has Tested Positive for COVID-19
- Employees who have come into close contact with an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 (co-worker or otherwise) need to monitor for symptoms and immediately self isolate if symptoms develop. They should also contact their Health Officer/Health Provider/8-1-1 to determine any necessary next steps.
- Sidhu & Sons Nursery will notify the local Medical Health Officer if more than one worker shows signs of illness.
- Sidhu & Sons Nursery will ensure that the following workers do not come to work and begin self-isolation.
- Workers who are ill, whether or not the illness has been confirmed as COVID-19. – Workers with COVID-19 like symptoms must begin self-isolation and be reassessed for when they can return to work.
- Workers who share a residence with a person who has been exposed to COVID-19. – Workers arriving in Canada must quarantine for 14 days before starting work.
Except for circumstances in which Sidhu & Sons Nursery is legally required to report workplace occurrences of communicable disease, the confidentiality of all medical conditions will be maintained in accordance with applicable law and to the extent practical under the circumstances. When it is required, the number of persons who will be informed that an unnamed employee has tested positive will be kept to the minimum needed to comply with reporting requirements and to limit the potential for transmission to others. Sidhu & Sons Nursery reserves the right to inform other employees that an unnamed co-worker has been diagnosed with COVID-19 if the other employees might have been exposed to the disease so the employees may take measures to protect their own health. Briggs Nursery also reserves the right to inform sub-contractors, vendors/suppliers or visitors that an unnamed employee has been diagnosed with COVID-19 if they might have been exposed to the disease so those individuals may take measures to protect their own health.
VIII. General Questions
Given the fast-developing nature of the COVID-19 outbreak, Sidhu & Sons Nursery may modify this Plan on a case by case basis. If you have any questions concerning this Plan, please contact Head Office.