The NSW government is taking further measures to prevent the spread of the potentially-deadly Coronavirus in the state, today advising that schoolchildren who have visited China in the past 14 days be kept home when school returns.
To date, there have been four confirmed cases in NSW and one in Victoria, leaving many business owners and workers concerned about managing the spread of the virus should it continue to escalate.
Some businesses are already taking action to protect employees from contracting the virus.
AuMake, a retailer that targets Asian tourists in Australia and daigou, said it implemented health and safety procedures when it first became aware of Coronavirus developments in China.
A spokesperson for Safe Work told Inside FMCG that Australia’s Work Health and Safety laws require that a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) ensures “so far as is reasonably practicable, the health and safety of their workers and others at the workplace”.
“This includes providing and maintaining a work environment that is without risks to health and safety. To meet their duty, a PCBU must identify hazards at the workplace, and the associated risks, and do what is reasonably practicable to eliminate the risks, or to minimise the risks if elimination is not reasonably practicable.”
So what can employers do in this case? For some businesses, offering flexibility to work from home may be an option to reduce risk, but in manufacturing, for example, this could have dire consequences for the business.
Today we’re asking, is your business taking any measures to minimise risk of contracting the disease? Let us know what action you are taking in the comments or email firstname.lastname@example.org