Over the past year, the need for strong employee safety in the workplace has grown even more due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Workers at essential businesses that are allowed to stay open throughout COVID-19 lockdowns do not only have to deal with the regular workplace hazards, but also the risk of being infected with the coronavirus. With that in mind, it might be necessary for your business to consider updating the risk assessment and safety policy to allow for the increased risk of infection and sickness and ensure that measures are in place to protect staff.
Have an Accessible Safety Policy
A good safety policy isn’t simply a document that is drawn up and then put in a drawer where it is forgotten about. Writing an effective safety policy involves employees from all aspects of your business and takes individual risks into consideration along with the safety of groups and departments as a whole. Your safety policy should not only cover all the everyday workplace hazards that employees must deal with, but also provide them with information on protecting themselves from COVID-19 at work. It should be accessible to all employees and provide them with useful information that they can utilise on a daily basis.
Personal Protective Equipment
Now more than ever, the need for personal protective equipment in workplaces is high. PPE may once have only been required for employees who worked with hazardous machinery, food, or potentially contaminated objects. However, it is now necessary for employees who are going to come into contact with members of the public or will struggle to social distance due to the nature of their work. Face masks are now mandatory for staff members in shops, restaurants and pubs due to the COVID-19 pandemic so it is important to ensure that these are provided and that employees know how to use them safely and effectively. Find face masks and more COVID-19 supplies for your business at medical-supermarket.com.
Good communication has always been crucial for a safe workplace, and it is even more essential during the COVID-19 pandemic. Along with encouraging employees to communicate quickly and clearly about any hazards or potential dangers that they have noticed in the workplace, it is essential to ensure that employees are communicating about any potential COVID-19 symptoms that they may have experienced or if they have come into contact with somebody who may have symptoms.
Prioritise Employee Health and Well-being
Employees who feel that their health and well-being come first at work are more likely to be satisfied and productive. Along with this, the risk of workplace accidents and illnesses will also be reduced. Allowing employees to take mental health days, for example, will prevent overwork and avoid potentially dangerous mistakes due to burnout. Regularly checking in with your employees to see how they are feeling and listening to any concerns that they have is important.
Workplace safety is more important than ever right now with thousands of people working through a pandemic. Putting employee health and safety first with clear guidelines, communication, support and safety equipment is key.