Has your company taken the proper action steps to prepare for potential disruptions in the workplace due to a pandemic? We have all heard the recent news about the Coronavirus making its way to the United States. Currently 13 states have confirmed cases including Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New Hampshire and New York. Has your executive team thought about how they would respond if an employee or visitor enters the workplace while sick? If they are sick they may spread the virus to others and potentially cause more people to become ill. Local hospitals and the CDC are taking a number of precautions to stop the spread of Coronavirus, including quarantining those who are sick as well as their family members.
As employers have you thought what would happen to your business if several employees are forced to stay home? Would you continue to pay them through the quarantine phase? Would you require that they use available PTO and sick time? How long could you hold their positions open even if you are not subject to FMLA? Can employees be set up to work from home? How will you protect the privacy of those who may become ill? All employers should be considering how they would answer these questions well before they actually have to.
I think we would all agree that taking preventative measures s and putting an action plan in place to secure the health and safety of your workforce is vital. We thought it would be helpful to everyone if we took the guess work out of creating an action plan and provided you with the resources you need to implement one. We also believe having a pandemic policy in your employee handbook is something every employer should consider. Nobody wants people showing up to work with a communicative illness that could infect everyone else at the workplace so having a message that encourages employees to stay home if they feel ill benefits everyone. This should be the rule every year not just when we are faced with an outbreak as serious as Coronavirus.
Please take a look at the attachments included in this email and feel free to call us with specific questions. In the meantime, here are some other tips to consider:
Post Wash Hands Frequently Poster
Post Cover your mouth when you cough Poster
Avoid those who are sick and encourage sick employees to stay home until they are well
Provide and Carry Hand Sanitizer
Disinfect commonly touched surfaces at work and home
Wash your hair every night
Avoid touching your face
Get plenty of Vitamin C
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