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New Guidelines on Reporting Outbreaks in Toronto Workplaces

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Employers will now have to notify Toronto Public Health (TPH) as soon as they become aware that two or more people at their workplace tested positive for COVID-19 within a 14-day interval.

On January 4, 2021, Toronto’s Medical Officer of Health released a Letter of Instruction to all employers permitted to be open under the Reopening Ontario Act. The letter lists additional measures to be followed to check the spread of COVID-19

Employees, too, must report any workplace situation that may put the health and safety of others at risk. For instance, if an employee tests positive for COVID-19 and was at the workplace while contagious, s/he must inform the employer as other co-workers may be infected.

Are there any other reporting requirements that employers must follow?

Employers must also:

Name a contact person

When employers notify TPH, they must also share the name and contact information for a designated person who can provide TPH with case details.

The contact person must be promptly available to communicate with TPH. They will also be responsible for carrying out any extra health and safety measures required by TPH.

Maintain contact information for all employees

Employers must have updated contact information, such as name, phone number, email address, for all workers. They must provide this information to TPH within 24 hours of notifying them of COVID-19 cases. TPH will use this information for contact management.

Notify other relevant government authorities

Employers must also inform the Ontario Ministry of Labour, Training, and Skills Development and/or other relevant government authorities, such as WSIB.

Are there any precautions that employees must observe?

Employees must complete a health screening questionnaire before each shift. They must stay home and self-isolate if they:

  • Experience new or worsening symptoms of COVID-19
  • Have had close contact with a confirmed or probable case of COVID-19
  • Have travelled outside of Canada in the past 14 days.
Disclosure of information on workplace outbreaks

The names of workplaces with COVID-19 outbreaks are being publicly posted on the City of Toronto’s Status of Cases in Toronto Dashboard.

This is to keep the public posted on where outbreaks are happening.

Do you need help creating health and safety policies for the pandemic?

Our experts will help you keep your business compliant with provincial legislation. When you sign up for Peninsula’s health and safety service, you sign off all your OHS compliance worries to us.

We’ll review your health & safety measures as well as your existing policies. Our health & safety experts will:

  • Be available 24/7 to answer any questions or resolve any workplace safety issues that you may have
  • Train your staff on workplace health and safety procedures
  • Write watertight policies and documents tailored to your business needs
  • Support and guide you during inspections

Given our low-cost membership, our services are affordable for businesses of any size. See how we’ve helped other small and medium businesses get their business compliant with provincial legislation. For HR and health and safety advice, call an expert today at 1 (833) 247-3652.