Gradual return to the workplace
Although a gradual return to the workplace is possible, telework is recommended in yellow and green zones.
Workers’ gradual return to the workplace is the employer’s responsibility. It is part of the employer’s right to manage. The CNESST recommends that employers plan and organize their employees’ gradual return to the workplace. Good planning ensures an effective return to the workplace in compliance with current preventive measures.
The employer must implement the preventive measures needed to reduce and control the risk of the spread of COVID-19. It must also make sure that workers respect these measures. If several employers share the same building, they should coordinate their efforts.
Several preventive measures are still necessary in yellow and green zones. A constant effort is required to make sure that the work environment is healthy and safe at all times.
The preventive measures for workplaces will be adjusted based on the development of knowledge, the epidemiological situation and vaccination coverage.
Employers who wish to have their employees continue to work remotely
Employers who wish to have workers continue to work remotely should define the terms and conditions in collaboration with their employees. Dialogue and cooperation are essential in determining the measures best adapted to each workplace
Employers who wish to have their employees return to the workplace
Employers who wish to begin a return to the workplace for their employees must make sure that the environment is healthy and safe for workers at all times. The CNESST also recommends that the return to the workplace be gradual.
The employer must respect the COVID-19 preventive measures specified in the Workplace Sanitary Standards Guide – COVID-19:
- exclusion of individuals with symptoms of COVID-19
- physical distancing
- hand hygiene
- respiratory etiquette
- a clean environment
Physical distancing in office buildings
The design of office buildings may require employees to work in close quarters. Physical distancing of 2 metres can be particularly difficult to respect in common areas such as lunch rooms, hallways, stairways and elevators. When physical distancing is impossible, other solutions, such as the use of a physical barrier or a quality mask, must be implemented. If a physical barrier is installed, or if quality masks are used, it is not necessary to reduce the occupation rate during transit (in a car, truck, bus, airplane, elevator).
Use of a mask in the workplace
The use of a quality mask indoors or outdoors is recommended when physical distancing is respected or if a physical barrier is installed. It is mandatory if physical distancing is impossible or if there are no physical barriers.