Centre issues new SOPs @work: Here are rules employers and employees need to follow starting June 8
Any employee residing in a COVID-19 containment zone should be allowed to work from home and not attend office till the time the area is denotified and that period will not be counted as leave, the Union health ministry said on Thursday.
The government has issued new SOPs for offices, giving several relaxations to both employees as well as employers, effective June 8. Any employee residing in a COVID-19 containment zone should be allowed to work from home and not attend office till the time the area is denotified and that period will not be counted as leave, the Union health ministry said on Thursday. As government starts to unlock the country, immediate sealing of buildings will not be done if one or two cases of COVID-19 are reported there and work can resume after disinfection as per the laid down protocols.
However, if there is a larger outbreak, the entire building will have to be closed for 48 hours and all the staff will work from home till the building is adequately disinfected and is declared fit for re-occupation, the ministry said in its 'SOPs on preventive measures to contain spread of COVID-19 in offices'.
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Offices in containment zones will remain closed except for medical and essential services and only those outside will be allowed to open up, the ministry said. People residing in containment zones should inform the same to the supervisory officer and not attend office till the zone is denotified. They should be permitted to work from home and it will not be counted as leave period.
People above 65, those with co-morbidities and pregnant women are advised to stay at home, except for essential and health purposes, and the office management should facilitate the process, the SOP said. Employees will be allowed in office only if they are wearing face cover/masks and these should be worn at all times on the office premises.
Meetings, as far as feasible, should be done through video conferencing and large gatherings prohibited, it said.
"Offices and other workplaces are relatively close settings, with shared spaces like work stations, corridors, elevators, stairs, parking places, cafeteria, meeting rooms and conference halls etc and COVID-19 infection can spread relatively fast among officials, staffs and visitors. There is a need to prevent spread of infection and to respond in a timely and effective manner in case suspect case of COVID-19 is detected in these settings, so as to limit the spread of infection," the ministry said.
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