BUSINESS: Protecting your staff from coronavirus – what you need to know


Most businesses remain closed under the current lockdown restrictions, but as they prepare themselves for the day they reopen, the government has issued advice to help the minimise the risk of exposing staff and customers to the coronavirus. 

The guidance covers everything from restaurants and other types of food outlets to construction staff, and cleaners, and suggests workers consider the way in which customers make use of the space around them when entering your place of work, as well as the ways in which staff may typically use the space.

If, for example, you run a small shop with four employees in service at any one time, the advice includes: 

  • staggering arrivals and exits from work. 
  • providing an outside space, where possible, for break times and lunches. 
  • staggering lunch breaks, to allow free movement in staff-only areas.
  • limiting the number of customers allowed into the shop at any one time. 
  • provide reasonable queuing spaces outside the shop. 
  • introducing a one-way flow of foot traffic inside the shop, to prevent congestion and limit customers’ contact with each other.

If you work in a role that requires you to visit people’s homes, (if you are a carer, for example), the advice includes: 

  • frequently cleaning objects and surfaces that are touched regularly
  • agreeing a suitable way to dispose of any waste products safely with the homeowner 
  • washing your hands more often than normal with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially if you cough, sneeze or blow your nose 
  • be careful to maintain a distance of 2 metres or more between yourself and anyone living in the home while you are there 

While we may have to wait a little longer before everyone can get back to work, the guidance will undoubtedly serve as a way to ensure that when the time comes, the risk to everyone is reduced as far as possible. 

To check the guidance for your place of work, visit the relevant page on the BCP Council website


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