What employers should do
If you are an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure a healthy and safe workplace.
WorkSafeBC’s Preventing exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace provides general information that all employers may use to assess the risks and controls in their workplace. Below are some additional steps to take to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.
You may also wish to review our industry information pages for preventative measures to protect workers in specific industries from COVID-19.
Assess whether workers should be at work
• Working from home
• Put physical distancing and other preventative measures in place
• For more information
• If you have a question or concern
• Assess whether workers should be at work
The first step is for employers to understand what workers should be at work. If practicable, employers should:
• Prioritize the work that needs to take place at the workplace to help your business operate as close to normal under the circumstances.
• Consider having workers work remotely (e.g., work at home).
Employers should ensure that the following workers do not come to work:
• Anyone with COVID‐19-like symptoms such as a sore throat, fever, sneezing, or coughing must self‐isolate at home for a minimum of 10 days from onset of symptoms, until their symptoms are completely resolved;
• Workers who have travelled internationally. In these cases, they must remain away from the workplace for at least 14 days;
• Workers who live in the same household as a confirmed or clinical COVID-19 case who is self- isolating;
• Workers who have been exposed to anyone confirmed to have COVID-19, or to anyone with possible symptoms of COVID-19, should call HealthLink BC at 8-1-1 for an assessment and to determine any necessary next steps.
Working from home
Many health and safety roles, rights, and responsibilities are just as applicable for at-home workers as they are for more traditional workplaces. Learn more about health and safety responsibilities when working from home.
Put physical distancing and other preventative measures in place
If it is necessary for workers to come to work, employers should take steps to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19.
The priority should be to take steps to ensure physical distancing is practiced in your workplace, including:
• If practicable, reconfiguring the workplace to maintain appropriate distance between workers;
• Limiting worker participation in in-person gatherings and encouraging practices like
• teleconferences as an alternative;
• Limiting worker travel.
Additional measures will depend on the workplace, but would generally include:
• Educating workers on health and safety measures to prevent transmission of infectious disease;
• Increase workplace cleaning, provide the necessary supplies, and reinforce personal hygiene messages to workers.
Don’t take your work with you – Poster and video to promote hand washing as the best way to prevent the spread of infectious disease.
For more information
The information on this page is based on current recommendations and may change. For the latest guidance, please see the health information from the British Columbia Centre for Disease Control, the latest news from the government of British Columbia, and the latest orders from the Office of the provincial health officer.
The BC Centre for Disease Control has collected COVID-19 information for Employers & Business, where you will find information for essential businesses.
The B.C. Business COVID-19 Support Service serves as a single point of contact for businesses throughout the province looking for information on resources available during the COVID-19 pandemic.
If you have a question or concern
Workers and employers with questions or concerns about workplace exposure to COVID-19 can call WorkSafeBC’s Prevention Information Line at 604.276.3100 in the Lower Mainland (toll-free within B.C. at 1.888.621.SAFE). You will be able to speak to a prevention officer to get answers to your questions, and if required, a prevention officer will be assigned to assess the health and safety risk at your workplace. Download the “British Columbia Covid-19 Workplace Guidance for Employers”