Workplace COVID-19 Safety Plan

As BC’s health benefits society, the health and wellbeing of our employees is our top priority. As the situation surrounding COVID-19 continues to evolve, we want to do our part to ensure the safety of our staff who are working in our office.

COVID-19 is proving to be a great test for us all, but rest assured we will continue to operate, just differently. We will have a blended office for the foreseeable future with some of our staff working from home while others return to work in our Burnaby office. We are following recommendation from the government and health authorities to protect the safety of our employees who serve our clients and members.

We will continue to follow the recommended approach from WorkSafeBC and the local health authorities for protection and prevention and we’ll keep you informed of any changes. This plan aligns with WorkSafeBC and was reviewed by our Joint Occupational Health & Safety Committee and CUPE 1816.

COVID-19 Levels of Protection

Different protocols offer different levels of protection. Wherever possible, use the protocol that offers the highest level of protection. Consider controls from additional levels if the first level isn’t practicable or does not completely control the risk.

  • First level protection (elimination) — Limit the number of people in your workplace where possible by implementing work-from-home arrangements, establishing occupancy limits, rescheduling work tasks, or other means. Rearrange work spaces to ensure that workers are at least 2 m (6 ft.) from co-workers, customers, and members of the public.
  • Second level protection (engineering controls) — If you can’t always maintain physical distancing, install barriers such as plexiglass to separate people.
  • Third level protection (administrative controls) — Establish rules and guidelines, such as posted occupancy limits for shared spaces, designated delivery areas, cleaning practices, and one-way doors and walkways to keep people physically separated.
  • Fourth level protection (PPE) — If the first three levels of protection aren’t enough to control the risk, consider the use of masks. Ensure masks are selected and cared for appropriately and that workers are using masks correctly.

PBC COVID-19 Safety Plan

FIRST

First level protection: Elimination

PBC has put the following measures and controls in place to limit the number of people in our workplace at any one time:

  • Implemented Work From Home program where over 82% (700+) of staff are currently working remotely;
  • Straight guideline and protocols around Work-From-Home vs. Work-From-Office to create cohorts of workers who work together and who do not interact with other cohorts;
  • Implemented rotational/alternating schedules with some job functions to reduce risk;
  • Remote collaboration tools are made available to all staff so virtual meetings can be held;
  • Established and posted occupancy limits for all meeting rooms and floor spaces;
  • Posted physical distancing markers and travel flow arrows throughout building;
  • Established Covid-19 Visitor Policy to limit traffic to staff and essential business nature only - until further notice, no customers or visitors are allowed into the premise.

In addition, PBC has put in place digitization improvements to our existing processes to further reduce paper and mail from entering the building. These digitization initiatives includes contactless e-forms and e-signatures.

SECOND

Second level protection: Engineering Controls

Where physical distancing cannot be maintained, PBC has implemented engineering controls at the following locations:

  • Barrier installed at strategic places where physical distancing may become a challenge;
  • Reconfigured furniture, tables, and chairs to ensure physical distancing;
  • Posted physical distancing markers and travel flow arrows throughout building;
  • Posted WorkSafeBC or CDC signages around physical distancing, PPE, and hygiene;
  • Significant number of additional sanitizer dispensers were installed throughout the building;
  • Upgraded, minimized or removed self-serve or shared equipment such as water fountains, coffee machines, microwaves, table condiments etc.;
  • Installed thermal camera systems in entrance points, while ensuring employees’ and visitors’ privacy;
  • Guides, Protocols, and Policy documents have been distributed to support all employees in implementing and enforcing these new procedures (see Administrative Controls below).
THIRD

Third level protection: Administrative Controls

PBC has developed / revised over 40 policies and protocols as part of the Covid-19 response including the following: Work From Home Policy, Fitness For Work Policy, Covid-19 Monitoring Policy, Covid-19 Illness Policy, Work From Office Policy, Covid-19 Temperature Check Protocol, Covid-19 Visitor Policy, Covid-19 Business Travel Policy, Use of Personal Protective Equipment Protocol, Personal Hygiene & Environmental Protocol, Shipping & Receiving packages Protocol, Work From Office Guide.

We have identified risk areas for each floor, and mitigation actions to reduce those risks. All of these were documented and communicated to all employees.

Mandatory Covid-19 Safely Training has been developed and conducted for all staff working in the building, as well as all supervisors with direct reports.

FOURTH

Fourth level protection: PPE

PBC understands that masks alone are not an effective protection for our employees.  On top of all the measures we put in place, we have made applicable PPEs available to staff working in the building and ensured proper training on the use of these PPEs.  There are also frequent reminders in the form of posters throughout the building.

Implement effective cleaning and hygiene practices

We have significantly increased cleaning and sanitizing of our workplace and surrounding areas, with emphasis on shared areas and equipment.

Disinfecting wipes and hand sanitizers are available within easy reach of all staff.