Offices in Toronto may be allowed to reopen as part of Stage 3, but water cooler chatter, work events, and even indoor meetings might not return for some time.
The rules applicable to workplaces in terms of office safety procedures, number of employees and opening requirements differ depending on the work sector and occupation, but most offices are allowed to reopen. in step 3, because the indoor assembly limits have been increased to a maximum of 50 people.
According to a COVID-19 Workplace Prevention resource on the Government of Ontario website, workplaces are encouraged to post posters in their offices or workplace regarding:
- clean work surfaces often
- cleaning tools before and after use
- clean regularly touched objects
- using boot disinfection bins
- open doors and windows to let in fresh air
- take breaks in the open air
- breathtaking lunch breaks
- organize outdoor meetings if possible
- reminders to stay two meters away from others
To help people, businesses and communities prepare for Stage 3, the Ontario government and health and safety associations have published more than 100 health and safety resources that cover a wide range of workplaces.
According to the Ontario government document “Framework for reopening the province during Stage 3”, companies are still strongly encouraged to allow their employees to work remotely where possible in order to contain the spread of COVID -19.
The resources available would help employers and workers better understand how to prevent the spread of COVID-19, according to the Government of Ontario website.
The sector guidelines contain recommendations and advice for employers on how to ensure the safety of workers at work.
The restaurant and food service industry, for example, has many requirements and guidelines, including maintaining a physical distance from others, disinfecting frequently touched surfaces, and frequent hand washing.
The construction industry has similar guidelines, such as practicing physical distancing and frequent hand washing, and their rules for disinfecting commonly affected surfaces and objects are more specific to their industry and the tools they use. .
As new sectors of the economy begin to reopen, additional workplace safety resources related to COVID-19 will be added.