Alert: Notifications and correspondence during COVID-19 restrictions
We are operating at reduced capacity due to the COVID 19 alert level four requirements. Find out more about how to correspond and notify us during this time.
Guidance and support for the public from government sources on the response to COVID-19 is available in one place on the govt.nz website(external link) to help you stay informed and help answer any questions or concerns that you may have.
From here information you can access includes:
- information for employers and employees around supporting workers to protect and where necessary, isolate themselves from others
- Ministry of Health COVID-19 information(external link), and its guidance on infectious disease prevention and control for workplaces.
WorkSafe expectations about COVID-19
The emergence of COVID-19 across the globe has created a new work health and safety risk that businesses need to manage. We expect all businesses to:
- follow the latest Ministry of Health advice about preventing COVID-19 and to promote good hygiene practices at work
- identify and manage any emerging risks brought about by the COVID-19 situation. For example, changes in consumer demand may impact worker health and safety, and supply issues for worker personal protective equipment (PPE). See below for more information about PPE.
We also expect workers to take care of their own health and safety, and the health and safety of others, while at work. This means following and cooperating with any reasonable health and safety instructions, policies and procedures they’re given.
This is an evolving situation and we will update this page as required.
You can find workplace guidance for employers and employees on Covid-19 on the Employment New Zealand website(external link).
How we are responding to COVID-19
As a regulator we need to make choices about what we do and how we do it. Right now, in response to the COVID-19 outbreak, we’re:
- prioritising support for businesses to understand how to manage this new work health and safety risk. This includes working with other agencies to make sure businesses can access the latest information about COVID-19
- not prioritising investigations about COVID-19 at this time.
If you have a worker who’s diagnosed with COVID-19, you don’t need to notify us. This is because a medical officer of health will make the notification to us if needed.
Managing supply issues for PPE
Updated PPE information can be found on our COVID-19 section.
Where there is a legal requirement to use a specific type of PPE you must continue to meet that requirement
Businesses could take this opportunity to re-assess their control measures and look at what other reasonably practicable control measures might be available that do not rely on PPE. For example:
- isolate any work activity that creates dust or fumes so fewer workers are affected by the work (so fewer people require PPE)
- consider alternative types of PPE that provide similar or better protection (this may mean checking gear provided from new sources is appropriate and fits properly)
- if no alternative controls are available, and you cannot source appropriate PPE, you may need to consider stopping that activity until the risks can be properly controlled again.