Posted April 1, 2020
COVID-19 VIRUS COMMUNICATION
Our business, amongst many other businesses in South Africa and globally, is already impacted by the COVID-19 Pandemic. As a responsible entity we wish to ensure that clear communications and best practices are adopted and implemented from the earliest outset.
Accordingly, we declare our support and appreciation for the directives and wishes expressed by our President and undertake to wherever possible take all necessary precautionary steps to curtail the furtherance of the disease. We wish to comply with all provisions of legislation including and specifically referencing: The Department of Employment and Labour Workplace Preparedness: COVID-19 (SARS-CoV-19 virus). We also take note of the WHO Guidelines, and the Department of Health Directives.
EFG Engineers is further aligning our COVID-19 response strategy with key Stakeholders and Clients. A three-pillar approach has been identified, namely good hygiene, social distancing and screening.
It is important that each employee takes the responsibility to help limit the spread of this disease in and outside the workplace.
Given the significant risk and impact of the COVID-19 disease, we have taken the following precautionary measures to limit any possible spreading of the disease.
• Any staff member who is experiencing the symptoms of fever, persistent coughing/sneezing and/or respiratory difficulty must contact their clinic/doctor to find out if you need to be tested for COVID-19 and inform your line manager. Please note that our existing sick leave policy applies to the above.
•To maintain good hygiene and social distancing, we encourage all staff and stakeholders to:
- Avoid close contact particularly with those who exhibit respiratory symptoms, fever and persistent coughing/sneezing.
- No shaking hands, high fives or hugging and we require that people keep at least 1 meter distance from each other.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or a bent elbow when coughing and sneezing and dispose of the tissue immediately and avoid touching your eyes, mouth and nose.
- Proper handwashing protocol according to the Centre for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC) is a key five step process:
- Wet hands with clean running water.
- Lather soap on hands, including under nails, between fingers and the backs of hands.
- Wash/scrub for at least 20 seconds.
- Rinse hands;
- Air dry or clean with towel/paper towel
• We will be providing hand washing facilities, soap and/or sanitizers, where possible at various points and encourage employees to practice regular hygiene.
• We request that office staff keep their workstations clean. It is imperative that every staff member take responsibility for good hygiene by cleaning their mouse, keyboard, phone and desk regularly with disinfectant.
• Site and Office staff are encouraged to ensure that all modes of Company transport, communal gathering areas such as eating areas, ablutions, kitchens, containers etc. are disinfected regularly.
• We will also provide medical masks upon request subject to availability – this is particularly for employees who are coughing or sneezing.
• All face-to-face training has been suspended until further notice. Where training is via internet links, skype, etc, this may proceed.
• Meetings and gatherings must be limited to 6 members where possible and social distancing must be adhered to.
• With immediate effect we have put an embargo on all non-essential business travel.
• Management will only consider critical business travel under well controlled circumstances and where virtual meetings or conferencing are not possible.
In addition to the above we undertake to investigate the viability of implementing Administrative Controls that may include,
• Requiring that sick employees stay at home.
• Investigating work from home opportunities where possible and where practical.
• Minimizing contact among employees, clients, and customers by replacing face-to-face meetings with virtual communications e.g. conference calls, Skype, etc.
• Discouraging non-essential local travel (work or holiday).
• Prohibiting staff to travel internationally (work or holiday) until further notice.
• Developing communications plans for answering employees’ concerns and internet-based queries.
In conclusion, and should it become necessary, we undertake to follow the necessary protocols in the unfortunate event that a staff member may become infected or may be compromised by the Corona Virus.
EFG Engineers Directors and Management undertake to regularly communicate with all Staff and Stakeholders as to any developments concerning the COVID -19 virus.
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