COVID-19 GUIDE – Construction sites

[Last updated: April 29, 2020]​​

To address the construction industry’s concerns regarding the spread of COVID-19, at the request of the Minister of Labour, Employment and Social Solidarity, the CNESST has joined forces with Direction générale de la santé publique and employer and labour associations in the construction industry to create the CNESST Tactical Committee – COVID-19 Construction Sites.

This committee is responsible for identifying problems, sharing good practices and finding preventive solutions to enforce public health guidelines and recommend measures to be implemented on construction sites.

This document is the culmination of a joint effort by labour and employer associations to identify measures to reduce exposure to COVID-19 at construction sites. These measures will apply when work resumes on construction sites and will be updated regularly as the COVID-19 situation develops and as issues brought before the Committee are analyzed. A checklist has been developed (Appendix C) to monitor on-site compliance on a daily basis.

Preventive measures to be put in place to protect the health of workers

Québec employers must take the necessary measures to protect the health and ensure the safety and physical well-being of their workers. On construction sites, employers and the principal contractor share the responsibility to ensure the health and safety of workers.

Workers must take the necessary measures to ensure their health, safety and physical well-being and see that they do not endanger the health, safety or physical well-being of other persons at or near their workplace.

In the event that a workplace does not comply with government guidelines and the employer does not address the COVID-19-related risk, a CNESST inspector could demand that the workplace be closed until the employer takes corrective action. Violators may be issued a statement of offence.

Acknowledgements

Many thanks to the members of the CNESST Tactical Committee – COVID-19 Construction Sites, coordinated by Louis Genest, Chief Consulting Engineer:

  • Luc Boily, Association des constructeurs de routes et grands travaux du Québec (ACRGTQ)
  • Sylvain Parisien, Association de la construction du Québec (ACQ)
  • Anny Bienvenue, Association des professionnels de la construction et de l’habitation du Québec (APCHQ)
  • Nicole Robichaud, Association des professionnels de la construction et de l’habitation du Québec (APCHQ)
  • Dominic Robert, Association des entrepreneurs en construction du Québec (AECQ)
  • André Bergeron, Corporation des maîtres mécaniciens en tuyauterie du Québec (CMMTQ)
  • Michel Bonneau, Corporation des maîtres électriciens du Québec (CMEQ)
  • Simon Lévesque, FTQ-Construction
  • Éric Nantel, Conseil provincial du Québec des métiers de la construction (International)1
  • Steve Prescott, Syndicat québécois de la construction (SQC)
  • Jean-Michel Houdet, CSD Construction
  • Bertrand Gauthier, CSN-Construction
  • Ghislain Brodeur, ministère de la Santé et des Services sociaux, Direction générale de la santé publique
  • Pierre Cyr, Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST)
  • Louis Genest, Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST)
  • Daniel Gendron, Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST)

Useful links

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1 This association has voiced concerns about the lack of specific protective measures for work performed with no minimum distance of 2 metres and about the absence of enforcement measures such as fines for offenders.​​​​​

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