Last updated: November 17th, 2021
The Government has announced that it will be implementing new restrictions on businesses in Ireland.
While this action is being taken to curtail the increasing number of COVID cases, it represents a step backwards for all businesses and particularly those who had only recently begun to return employees to the workplace…
What are the restrictions and how will employers be affected?
Key employer points of the announcement include:
- From Thursday, November 18th, hospitality businesses such as bars, nightclubs, and restaurants must close at midnight.
- From Friday, November 19th, people will be asked to work from home unless it’s necessary to attend the workplace in person.
- COVID passes will be required to enter cinemas and theatres.
- Anyone living in a household with someone who is a confirmed case of COVID-19 is to restrict their movements until they have three negative antigen test results within five days.
Employers should also be aware that the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) began to decrease in stages from November 16th, with the €250 rate reducing to €203 per week.
What now for employers?
The increase in positive COVID-19 cases in Ireland has been a cause for concern for employers, employees, and the public at large. Whilst this might not be welcome news for employers, it’s important that remote working policies are fit for purpose.
Employers must also look at their staffing needs as a midnight curfew will impact thousands of employers and employees. As the festive season approaches, employers may be worried about a potential loss of earnings. They might also need to adjust their rotas to ensure that employees meet their contracted hours.
Also at this time, it’s important that employers conduct appropriate risk assessments, get their policies and documentation in order, and if applicable, be aware of the support, financial or otherwise, available to them.
Free download: Risk Assessment Templates
Remote worker health & safety
Now that employees are once again being told to work from home, it’s important that they have a safe environment to work in. Our video outlines the key remote worker health & safety considerations for employers with staff working remotely.
Health & safety resources
For essential health & safety resources when managing COVID-19 and the Work Safely Protocol, use BrightSafe.
With BrightSafe, you can manage all your health & safety tasks in one place online. You can create risk assessments to HSA standards, including COVID-19 risk assessments, take CPD-accredited e-learning courses, and much more.
Find out how BrightSafe can help you today.
Need help managing remote workers and the Work Safely Protocol?
If you need guidance on ensuring your policies align with the Work Safely Protocol or help setting your employees up to work remotely, we’re here for you. Speak with one of our HR or health and safety consultants today on 0818 923 923.