A new provincial order will mean you need to enact and post your COVID-19 Safety Plan in BC
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If your personal service business is located in BC, a new order from the Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, will require you to restart the COVID-19 Safety Plan you once had in place.
This means you will need to locate your plan, revisit the details, and post it for your clients to see. The COVID-19 Safety Plan will replace your current Communicable Disease Prevention plan.
Here’s our helpful guide to get you compliant with the new orders (which will be enforced by WorkSafeBC).
Step one: Locate your COVID-19 Safety Plan
The COVID-19 Safety Plan was the document you would have created roughly 18 months ago. This plan is created by you and your team, but follows a guideline. To get an idea of what makes for a safe COVID-19 Safety Plan, here’s a resource.
You can also get a COVID-19 Safety Plan template from WorkSafeBC here and a 5-step planning resource here. Industry-specific information, developed in collaboration with the BeautyCouncil can be found here.
Step two: Review and update your plan
Things have changed and you may want to review the plan you had before. One directive from Dr. Henry is you no longer need to perform any contact tracing.
Contact tracing is where you record the name of anyone entering your workplace and keep that on file. Dr. Henry explained to us in a meeting yesterday that “Omicron travels so quickly, tracing does not work since the virus will have run its course by the time any tracing can be done”.
However, client screening is still strongly recommended.
Step three: Post your plan for clients and inspector to see
As before, print and post your COVID-19 Safety Plan for your clients to see. You may also choose to add this to your social media, e-mailers,and any communication you have with clients.
Comments made in our meeting with the province
“We are heading back to a COVID-19 Safely Plan program,” said Anne Naser, CEO of WorkSafeBC. “We have done this before, so I’m confident we can do it again. We are here to help you as you need and assist you as we move forward.”
Ravi Kahlon, Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation said we’ve been here before so it’s a matter of “dusting off that previous COVID-19 safety plan”.
Dr. Bonnie Henry, the Provincial Health Officer, said this new virus has changed in very important ways. “About 90% of cases are Omicron and took just 3 weeks to take over,” she pointed out. “Incubation is is about 3 days from exposure to symptoms – the next generation of people are infected by the time the person who was infected in the first place experiences symptoms.
“We have to take universal measures to help prevent the spread,” said Dr. Henry. “The types of illness is less severe, and being vaccinated provides excellent protection for most people. A runny nose, runny eyes, and a headache are typical symptoms. Thankfully, we are not seeing the same level of hospitalizations but we don’t know what those numbers are going to be; it depends on how the spread happens.”
“I’m trying not to interfere as much in the economy as possible, but with the burden on hospitals. It is critical we slow the spread as much as we can,” she stated.
“You cannot expect to close down everything in society. If we go back to those basic principles, we can maintain a minimum of closures as is needed.”
“The posting of the plans allows a business ‘blame me or WorkSafeBC’ when clients raise any concerns,” she said.
Find all provincial regulations here.