Businesses have a huge amount of information available on staying COVIDSafe. In fact there is so much that it is hard to know where to start. And then there are the updates, changes and different rules for different industries to get our heads around. So how do we know that we are doing the right thing?
Every Victorian business with on-site operations must have a COVIDSafe Plan for each workplace and provide it to an Authorised Officer (AO) upon request. The plan must be updated to reflect current regulations. Being COVIDSafe helps protects workers, prevents disruptions, and keeps businesses open.
To ensure compliance, authorised officers are doing regular spot checks of businesses and asking to see the COVIDSafe plan. Did you know that if a business failed to have a COVIDSafe plan in place, it would get a $10,904 fine?
Planning ahead to ensure your business is COVIDSafe protects your workers, your customers, and your business too. And that’s good for everyone.
What is considered a ‘compliant’ COVIDSafe plan?
- Your plan describes how you will keep your workers and customers safe. It also helps you prepare for a case of COVID-19 in the workplace.
- It’s the simple things that protect us all from COVID-19; things like wearing a face mask when required, improving air flow, getting vaccinated, and getting tested if you have symptoms.
- Good hygiene, physical distancing, wearing face masks, improving ventilation and worker ‘check in’ are still considered excellent COVIDSafe business practises.
- Businesses are not required to use a specific format to document their COVIDSafe plan, but if you don't know where to start you can download a COVIDSafe plan template
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)
Does my business fall under the ‘vaccinated economy’?
The term ‘Vaccinated economy’ is not a defined term but generally refers to the sector of the economy comprised of businesses that ensure that workers and patrons who attend their premises are up to date with their vaccinations. These businesses include adult education, physical recreation, beauty therapy, hairdressers, hospitality, entertainment, and community premises, but don’t include general retail and essential services.
How do I manage a positive case at work?
Step-by-step guidance is available here: Case in the workplace | Coronavirus Victoria
- Direct the worker to go home and isolate for 7 days
- Identify the workplace contacts. You can use this tool to determine who is a workplace contact
- Contact the workplace contacts
- Inform all workers
- Put in place appropriate risk management measures
- Notify the department if you have 5 or more cases within a 7-day period via the COVID-19 outbreak notification form
Are retail and hospitality workers required to wear a face mask?
- Workers in an indoor space that is a publicly accessible area of a retail premises or food and drink premises (including food courts), are still required to wear a face mask.
Please check this link for more information on Where face masks are required.
If I have a takeaway restaurant, do I need to check the vaccination status of customers?
If a business is operating as takeaway only with no dine-in options and doesn’t have tables and chairs, then this business doesn’t have to check the vaccination of customers. However, if this takeaway business has tables and dine-in options (even outdoor), then they must check the vaccination status of the customers dining in.
Resources and assistance
Shire COVIDSafe Education Officers are available to provide free onsite advice. Contact them on 5950 1000 or email them to book a site visit.
Businesses can also register for a free COVIDSafe plan information session