Due to its success in administering COVID-19 vaccination doses, at 11:59pm, July 30, 2021, New Brunswick will move to the Green Phase in its COVID-19 reopening protocol. At the Green level, the mandatory order will not be renewed and all COVID-19 related restrictions will be removed. This means that government initiated provincial border and travel restrictions will be lifted, gathering restrictions and capacity limits will be eliminated, and there will no longer be any requirement to wear face masks. Of course, employers may choose to maintain their own health related policies related to masks and other PPE. Federal border restrictions remain in effect.
However, as society moves out of the pandemic, COVID-19 will still exist. Thus, businesses face a higher level of responsibility to take the precautions necessary to ensure the health and safety of employees and customers. Without states of emergency or public health emergencies in effect, an employer’s lack of action in preventing COVID-19 could result in a COVID-19 case being considered a workplace illness.
Therefore, businesses are strongly encouraged to follow WorkSafeNB’s Guide to Communicable Disease Prevention. The document recommends keeping COVID-19 measures in place related to signage (e.g. stay home if unwell), hand hygiene facilities, maintaining physical distancing and use of physical barriers if physical distancing cannot be maintained.
For questions or more information contact
Director, Government Relations (Atlantic)