COVID-19 surge: GEA urges employers to revisit WHO protocols

Accra The Ghana Employer’s Association (GEA) on Thursday urged employers to ensure strict compliance with World Health Organization (WHO) COVID-19 protocols in view of the recent upsurge in the number of active cases in the country.

A statement signed by Mr Alex Frimpong, Chief Executive Officer, GEA, copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra, called on all employers to as a matter of urgency revisit and pursue in a strict manner all the protocols outlined by the WHO and Government in order to contain the spread of the pandemic.

 

It said current information from the Ministry of Health (MOH) shows that the spread of the pandemic was on the sharp rise after being contained for several months since it broke out in Ghana on March 15, 2020.

 

The statement said it was essential that all establishments seriously commit to the COVID-19 safety protocols to prevent infections at workplaces.

 

These include promotion of regular and thorough handwashing by employees, contractors and customers.

 

Surfaces and tables – desks tops, door handles, tables and computers need to be wiped with disinfectants at regular intervals each day because contamination of surfaces touched by employees and customers is one of the main ways that COVID-19 spread.

 

Reduce physical meetings and events because there was a risk that people attending the meeting might expose others to the COVID-19 virus.

 

Organize work to reduce person-to-person contact, ensuring physical distance at the workplace or implementing remote work arrangements.

 

Maintain good workplace hygiene and good indoor ventilation.

 

Provide adequate facilities – soap, hand sanitizer, signage, and reminders and encourage workers to practice workplace hygiene.

 

The statement also urged employers to direct workers to stay at home or work from home if they have “flu-like” symptoms.

 

Implement flexible work arrangements where possible, and increase physical space between workers at the workplace.

 

Others are implement flexible meetings and delivering services remotely holding meetings via video conferencing or phone calls or considering if large gatherings can be rescheduled, staggered or cancelled.

 

The statement also called for a change in workplace culture – stoppage of handshaking, workers taking lunch at own desk or outside rather than in the cafeteria or breakrooms, limit sharing of food in the workplace.

 

The statement said employers were therefore, reminded to collaborate with their workers to conform to these basic actions and measures to protect the health and security of employees and their families as well as sustain the enterprise.

 

It noted that according to the 2020 Ghana Statistical Service (GSS) COVID-19 Business Tracker Survey results, 770,000 workers had their wages reduced and 42,000 workers were laid off during Ghana’s COVID-19 partial lockdown.

 

It encouraged all workers to comply strictly with the COVID-19 protocols even after work, when they join their families back at home and in their communities.

 

It said the effects of the pandemic place an obligation on all stakeholders to adhere strictly to the established protocols to prevent escalation of the pandemic.

 

It said attention must also be paid to all directives and updates from the Government and MOH regarding the evolution of the pandemic in Ghana.

 

GEA commends the Government for the policies and strategies adopted so far to contain the spread of the virus and to keep the economy on the path of recovery.

 

It said the Association also assures Government of its full support and cooperation in our collective obligation to rid Ghana of this pandemic.

 

 

 

Source: Ghana News Agency

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