Coronavirus (COVID-19): Practising social distancing can keep you and other employees safe – March 18 2020


We want to share important messaging regarding social distancing – one of the most important things we can do to protect ourselves and each other from COVID-19.

All employees should be aware of this safe practice.

Social distancing is when we deliberately avoid large crowds, limit the number we come into close contact with, and increase the physical space between people to avoid spreading a disease within the community.

The general rule of thumb is to stay at least two metres (six feet) away from other people to lessen your chances of catching COVID-19.

Social distancing should be achievable most of the time, including in our plants and depots. Where it is harder to achieve due to space constraints and some tasks requiring two people, we will attempt to minimize how often employees are in close proximity.

In Operations, we have urged team leaders to stagger start times, where feasible, to allow employees taking public transit to avoid rush-hour commutes. Similarly, we’ve encouraged them to stagger break and lunch periods to avoid large groups in break rooms at the same time.

But, by practising these behaviours, ALL employees may protect themselves and others:

  • Keep twice an arm’s length between yourself and others when arriving and leaving work, walking hallways or at breaks.
  • Give enough space when standing in line.
  • Avoid direct physical contact, such as handshaking or hugging.
  • Wash your hands regularly and frequently with soap for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Consider sitting away from others in lunchrooms and break rooms.
  • Team leaders should conduct talks in smaller groups if this helps with social distancing or conduct talks over intercom system, if possible.
  • Replace face-to-face meetings with conference calls, video conferencing or Skype.

Some of the guidelines prepared for the Operations personnel offer useful tips for all employees. The documents have not changed and can be accessed by clicking on one of the links below:

Every precautionary step we take helps and we’ll continue to do everything we can to keep employees safe, including following the guidance of the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC), the Government of Canada’s lead for COVID-19.

We will continue to address emerging challenges and keep you regularly updated. As this situation evolves, so too will our approach.

Thank you for your patience and impressive service. Make it safe, Make it home and Keep Wellness in Mind.

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