19/10/2020 - Permalink

Coronavirus: Staying safe in the workplace

Related topics: Community / Coronavirus / Health / Partner organisations

Share the message, not the coronavirus.

That’s the message to workers across Shropshire who are being encouraged to socially distance and not share items during well-earned breaks in their staff room.

With the number of workplace-based COVID-19 cases on the rise, Shropshire Council is urging people to be vigilant by not sharing any of the following items with colleagues:-

  • Mobile phones
  • Lighters, cigarettes and vapes
  • Cups and glasses
  • Cutlery
  • Plates

The warning comes after a huge increase in cases across Shropshire. The county is at a critical point in the fight against the virus, with the threat of tougher restrictions close to becoming a reality.

The council is also encouraging people to think before they car share, and use alternatives if they can.

Dean Carroll, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for adult social care, public health and climate change, said:

“In the past, communal areas like staff rooms and canteens have been social hubs for many workplaces. Unfortunately, we are now living in unprecedented times and coronavirus isn’t going away anytime soon.

“We have seen outbreaks in many work-based settings. I know many people have missed work colleagues following lockdown or furlough, but I am pleading with everyone to follow the rules and measures designed to keep themselves and others safe.

“That means staff must ensure they comply with social distancing regulations. We are also urging people not to share items such as cups, glasses, cigarette lighters and cutlery to help cut the risk of spreading the infection.

“When it comes to car sharing – there is clearly a risk if you’re with people you don’t live with.

“If you have no other option, try to travel with the same people each time, keep to small groups, open windows, wear face coverings and try to face away from each other.

“Workplaces must also play their part by enforcing these regulations, including reduced capacity within staff rooms and communal areas.”

If you think your workplace isn’t safe to return to during the pandemic, Shropshire Council is here to help.

It is providing advice and promises to investigate any complaint as workplaces must be COVID-19-secure to keep staff and the public safe.

Dean Carroll added:

“I know lots of businesses across the county are acting responsibly for their staff by creating COVID-19-secure work environments.

“I want to reassure both businesses and staff that we are here to help. Our public health team are proactively engaging with businesses and now providing a service where staff can reach out to us with any concerns, knowing that their details will not be shared with their employer.”

Anyone with any queries or concerns can email shropshirepublichealth@shropshire.gov.uk

Further information

Step Up and help us stop the spread of coronavirus:

  • Work from home if you can
  • Limit contact with other people
  • Keep your distance from people not in your household bubble (2 metres apart where possible)
  • Stick to a maximum group of 6 people when meeting socially – indoors or outdoors
  • Wash your hands regularly with soap and water for at least 20 seconds
  • Do not leave home if you or anyone in your household has symptoms
  • Wear a face covering in indoor settings where social distancing may be difficult, and where you will meet people you do not normally meet.
  • Anyone who has any symptoms should book a test and not leave home for at least 10 days. Those living in households should self-isolate for 14 days if they or any members of the household receive a positive test.
  • You can book a test by calling 119 or click here

Download ‘Step Up Shropshire’ posters here.

For local advice and support during the pandemic (especially if you are self-isolating), call Shropshire Council’s COVID-19 Helpline on 0345 678 9028 (lines open on the weekend on Saturday from 9am-4pm and Sunday 9am-12pm) or visit our website at www.shropshire.gov.uk/coronavirus.