Physical Distancing at Work & Working at Home (COVID)

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on Linkedin Email this link

At Work Arrangements and Locations

  • Employees will be assigned to individual workstations or work areas that provides 2 metres of separation from other individuals.
  • In situations where employees are required to work together in close proximity (less than 2m) to complete a task, the employee must minimize their time in that situation, and follow hand and respiratory hygiene protocols. The Town will also install a physical barrier where possible.
  • Employees are to NOT be reassigned between workstations or work areas. When there is a need to reassign employees, the manager and/or director must undertake a risk analysis to determine the impact of the reassignment on the risk of transmission of COVID-19, prior to making the decision.
  • A current list of all employees assigned to designated workstations or work areas shall be maintained in each Town workplace along with a record of any reassignments of employees.

Working at Home

To help prevent the potential exposure and spread of the COVID-19, the Town supports alternative work arrangements in situations where work can be performed from home or at an alternative location. The Town want to increase the number of employees who are working remotely to the greatest extent possible, while doing so in a way that supports the essential operations of the Town. Management will determine which positions that alternative work arrangements will be considered for based the compatibility/nature of the work, operational needs, maintaining appropriate service levels, employees’ job responsibilities and existing technology/technological infrastructures. Staff who are designated as working from home shall not return to the regular work place and will be required to be treated in the same manner as the public entering the building.

For positions whose essential functions require an in-person presence still, those employees are expected to attend work as usual and follow the best practices and guidelines to protect their health and safety.

Supporting material

Physical Distancing

All employees, contractors and clients will practice physical distancing and other public health recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Physical distancing of at least 2 meters should be maintained, at all times.

Employees need to ensure they take the practical steps to ensure physical distancing is maintained in the following areas:

  • While commuting to the workplace or between work locations,
  • While working,
  • During all group job tasks including meetings that shall be held in open spaces or outside,
  • During breaks or while in communal spaces, or at any other time where employees may gather,
  • After work hours, employees must continue to practice physical distancing.

There are situations, where it is not possible to maintain operations while respecting the 2m separation. The following guidance provides employees methods to achieve physical distancing when it is difficult to do so:

  • An impermeable barrier (“Physical barrier”) will be installed in collaboration between workstations (people) where possible. The barrier will prevent one person’s cough or sneeze from contacting another person. The barrier will be made of a non-porous material that can be effectively disinfected.
  • Barriers will be site specific and must be installed in such a way as to minimize risk of cross contamination (e.g. Plexiglass barriers to protect customer service reps from the public).
  • If physical barriers cannot be erected at workstation or worksite, and employees are required to work together in close proximity (less than 2m) to complete a task, the employee must minimize their time in that situation, and follow hand and respiratory hygiene protocols.

Supporting material

  • Refer to the documents section of this page for additional information on physical distancing procedures

Breaks and Communal Areas

Employees must maintain physical distancing, decrease crowding, and reduce social interactions; maintaining small, and consistent groupings of 5 or fewer people, which will help prevent and control the potential transmission of COVID-19.

  • Start/stop times, breaks and lunch will be staggered where possible to minimize employees congregating.
  • In-person meetings and other gatherings will be replaced with virtual ones or meetings in open spaces where social distancing can be maintained (i.e. outside).
  • All employee gatherings must be 5 or fewer people and be structured so that those present can maintain a physical distance of 2 metres from each other.
  • Employees must adhere to physical distancing, hand and respiratory hygiene if they leave their worksite during a designated break.

Transportation and Municipal Vehicles

In situations where employees are required to travel together in vehicles to their worksite, employees will travel in a designated vehicle for their use. The maximum number of employees per vehicle shall not exceed two people. Please read the section on guidance for situations where maintaining physical distance is difficult to protect employees when they cannot maintain physical distancing.

Proper precautions must be exercised when travelling to and from worksites, including frequent handwashing and not touching your own face, maintaining physical distancing, cleaning and disinfecting high touch points like door handles, and minimizing contact with members of the public and public places.

Cleaning Vehicles

At the start of each work day and throughout the day, employees must clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces in the vehicle using disinfecting wipes or spray and if these are unavailable, soap and water.

High touch or key contact points include:

  • Door handles (inside and out),
  • Window buttons,
  • Steering wheel and controls,
  • Shifter,
  • Dash controls
  • Ventilation grills and knobs,
  • Rear-view mirror,
  • Armrests,
  • Grab handles, seat adjusters,
  • Seat belt buckles,
  • Radio and communication devices.

At Work Arrangements and Locations

  • Employees will be assigned to individual workstations or work areas that provides 2 metres of separation from other individuals.
  • In situations where employees are required to work together in close proximity (less than 2m) to complete a task, the employee must minimize their time in that situation, and follow hand and respiratory hygiene protocols. The Town will also install a physical barrier where possible.
  • Employees are to NOT be reassigned between workstations or work areas. When there is a need to reassign employees, the manager and/or director must undertake a risk analysis to determine the impact of the reassignment on the risk of transmission of COVID-19, prior to making the decision.
  • A current list of all employees assigned to designated workstations or work areas shall be maintained in each Town workplace along with a record of any reassignments of employees.

Working at Home

To help prevent the potential exposure and spread of the COVID-19, the Town supports alternative work arrangements in situations where work can be performed from home or at an alternative location. The Town want to increase the number of employees who are working remotely to the greatest extent possible, while doing so in a way that supports the essential operations of the Town. Management will determine which positions that alternative work arrangements will be considered for based the compatibility/nature of the work, operational needs, maintaining appropriate service levels, employees’ job responsibilities and existing technology/technological infrastructures. Staff who are designated as working from home shall not return to the regular work place and will be required to be treated in the same manner as the public entering the building.

For positions whose essential functions require an in-person presence still, those employees are expected to attend work as usual and follow the best practices and guidelines to protect their health and safety.

Supporting material

Physical Distancing

All employees, contractors and clients will practice physical distancing and other public health recommendations to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Physical distancing of at least 2 meters should be maintained, at all times.

Employees need to ensure they take the practical steps to ensure physical distancing is maintained in the following areas:

  • While commuting to the workplace or between work locations,
  • While working,
  • During all group job tasks including meetings that shall be held in open spaces or outside,
  • During breaks or while in communal spaces, or at any other time where employees may gather,
  • After work hours, employees must continue to practice physical distancing.

There are situations, where it is not possible to maintain operations while respecting the 2m separation. The following guidance provides employees methods to achieve physical distancing when it is difficult to do so:

  • An impermeable barrier (“Physical barrier”) will be installed in collaboration between workstations (people) where possible. The barrier will prevent one person’s cough or sneeze from contacting another person. The barrier will be made of a non-porous material that can be effectively disinfected.
  • Barriers will be site specific and must be installed in such a way as to minimize risk of cross contamination (e.g. Plexiglass barriers to protect customer service reps from the public).
  • If physical barriers cannot be erected at workstation or worksite, and employees are required to work together in close proximity (less than 2m) to complete a task, the employee must minimize their time in that situation, and follow hand and respiratory hygiene protocols.

Supporting material

  • Refer to the documents section of this page for additional information on physical distancing procedures

Breaks and Communal Areas

Employees must maintain physical distancing, decrease crowding, and reduce social interactions; maintaining small, and consistent groupings of 5 or fewer people, which will help prevent and control the potential transmission of COVID-19.

  • Start/stop times, breaks and lunch will be staggered where possible to minimize employees congregating.
  • In-person meetings and other gatherings will be replaced with virtual ones or meetings in open spaces where social distancing can be maintained (i.e. outside).
  • All employee gatherings must be 5 or fewer people and be structured so that those present can maintain a physical distance of 2 metres from each other.
  • Employees must adhere to physical distancing, hand and respiratory hygiene if they leave their worksite during a designated break.

Transportation and Municipal Vehicles

In situations where employees are required to travel together in vehicles to their worksite, employees will travel in a designated vehicle for their use. The maximum number of employees per vehicle shall not exceed two people. Please read the section on guidance for situations where maintaining physical distance is difficult to protect employees when they cannot maintain physical distancing.

Proper precautions must be exercised when travelling to and from worksites, including frequent handwashing and not touching your own face, maintaining physical distancing, cleaning and disinfecting high touch points like door handles, and minimizing contact with members of the public and public places.

Cleaning Vehicles

At the start of each work day and throughout the day, employees must clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces in the vehicle using disinfecting wipes or spray and if these are unavailable, soap and water.

High touch or key contact points include:

  • Door handles (inside and out),
  • Window buttons,
  • Steering wheel and controls,
  • Shifter,
  • Dash controls
  • Ventilation grills and knobs,
  • Rear-view mirror,
  • Armrests,
  • Grab handles, seat adjusters,
  • Seat belt buckles,
  • Radio and communication devices.