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Covid-19: How to deal with vulnerable employees

Covid-19: How to deal with vulnerable employees

Dear employer

There has been some confusion surrounding the return to work of employees who are considered to be high risk.

These are employees with a history of comorbidities and/or employees over the age of 60.

On careful reading of the regulations, it seems that the return of these employees to the workplace is not prohibited, however, some special measures need to be put in place by the employer.

The overarching measure is that these employees should be allowed to work from home, where it is practical and possible.

However, where working from home is not possible, these employees may return to work, but the employer may need to take additional Occupational Health and Safety steps.

These special measures have not been specified and will depend on the risk factors identified in each individual workplace.

These measures may include, full-face shields, more social distancing, additional barriers, dedicated work areas etc.

Employers must require all employees to disclose any pre-existing conditions that may identify them as a vulnerable employee in order for the employer to manage the risk.

A draft of such a disclosure has already been included in the ‘return to work’ TOOLKIT.

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