COVID-19: Essential Working Information

The Institute has received a significant number of enquiries from our members seeking clarification around the recently implemented restrictions on working practices.

The UK Government’s recent document, Staying at home and away from others (social distancing), states:

If you cannot work from home then you can still travel to work, provided you are well and neither you nor any of your household are self-isolating. This is consistent with advice from the Chief Medical Officer.

Employers who have people in their offices or onsite should ensure that employees are able to follow established guidelines on social distancing, including maintaining a 2-metre distance from others, and washing their hands with soap and water often for at least 20 seconds (or using hand sanitiser gel if soap and water is not available).’

The Scottish Government’s Coronavirus (COVID-19): business and social distancing guidance, published yesterday, suggests that individuals and businesses not being specifically asked to close should consider a key set of questions:

  • Is what you do essential or material to the effort against the virus or to the wellbeing of society?
  • If so, can your staff work from home?
  • If not, can you practise safe social distancing and comply with ALL other standard health and safety requirements?

Both businesses and individuals are responsible for setting their own working practices whilst ensuring they remain compliant with the latest government advice at all times. As this advice is likely to be updated frequently over the next few weeks, make sure to keep checking our website for the latest information.

We are fully supportive of any measures implemented to help reduce the spread of Coronavirus and alleviate pressure on our health system.

Useful Links

Confor – specific advice for the forestry and wood sector & clarity on key workers
Forestry Commission – statement on COVID-19
Defra – summary of the latest news from Defra related to COVID-19
UK Government – general up-to-date information

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