Many businesses are wondering how and when they can re-open.
Like essential services during the pandemic, all employers must demonstrate that they can operate safely. In fact, all employers are required under the Workers Compensation Act to ensure the safety of their employees at work. As local businesses, non-profits, and organizations plan for their restart, WorkSafeBC is the best resource. WorkSafeBC is working with industry associations to ensure the direction and guidance they provide to their members meets the requirements set out by the Provincial Health Officer, and will work with employers and workers through educational materials, consultation, and workplace inspections to help them restart safely.
Employers will be required to review the new Health and Safety Guidelines, best practices and other resources from WorkSafeBC and adapt these materials into appropriate COVID-19 Safe Plans for their workplace. Check out this COVID-19 Safety Plan Template.
Sectors that have operated during the pandemic may need to update their COVID-19 Safe Plans to fit with updated Health and Safety Guidelines, best practices, and resources.
Businesses should go to the WorkSafe BC website to review guidelines for safely re-opening both generally and on a sectoral basis. If the sector your business belongs to is not listed, it may be that the guidelines have not yet been developed and may be forthcoming in a future phase of restarting. You should contact WorkSafeBC for further guidance.
- General Guidelines
- Agriculture Guidelines
- Arts and Cultural Facilities Guidelines
- Childcare Guidelines
- Construction Guidelines
- Education (K-12) Guidelines
- Forestry Guidelines
- Gyms and Fitness Centres Guidelines
- Health care Guidelines
- Health Professionals Guidelines
- Hospitality Guidelines
- In-Person Counselling Guidelines
- Manufacturing Guidelines
- Municipalities Guidelines
- Offices Guidelines
- Parks Guidelines
- Personal Services Guidelines
- Real Estate Guidelines
- Restaurant, Cafes, and Pubs Guidelines
- Retail Guidelines
- Small business Guidelines
- Transportation Guidelines
- Guidelines from the City of New Westminster on the installation of COVID-19 barriers
- May 28th BC Public Health Order regarding episodic markets (farmers markets or community markets)
- Retail should also consult the Retail Council of Canada recovery playbook for helpful information.
- Food & Beverage businesses should also consult BC Restaurant & Food Services Association Blueprint for Reopening.
- Patio and Service Area Expansion supports safe distancing - process expedited by Liquor and Cannabis Regulation Branch
- Businesses regulated by Fraser Health should also review this letter from Fraser Health with further information.
- The BC Government has a checklist that may be useful.
- The Fraser Health Public Health order to close gyms and fitness centres was lifted May 15 2020. Here is guidance for re-opening from Fraser Health for gyms and fitness centres.
- The BC Economic Development Assocation has a re-opening plan template. (Link will open a Word file)
- We recommend building owners that have been closed please review the Canadian Water and Wastewater Guidelines for Safely Re-Opening
Enforcement for Re-Opening
Neither WorkSafe BC, nor the City of New Westminster, will be reviewing individual businesses’ plans to re-open. It is the responsibility of the business to ensure it is following all of the guidelines necessary when they re-open. City of New Westminster COVID-19 Compliance Officers will continue to respond to complaints or concerns from the public and will contact/visit the business in question to ensure education and enforcement.