30 April 2020
Whilst the challenging circumstances presented by the COVID-19 outbreak are acknowledged, it is important to recognise that the legal requirements imposed by the Health and Safety at Work (Jersey) Law 1989 (HSW Law), and the need to ensure compliance, remain unchanged. Whilst our regulatory approach will take a flexible and proportionate account of the risks and challenges arising from the Covid-19 outbreak, all those with duties under the HSW Law, including employers, the self-employed and employees, must continue to assess and control, so far as is reasonably practicable, the significant risks associated with their work activities.
In view of the foreseeable health risks from exposure to COVID-19, this must now include consideration of how such exposures will be minimised and controlled.
The HSI continues to provide regulatory oversight of how duty holders are meeting their legal duties in accordance with the HSI enforcement policy, and in the context of current GoJ advice on current public health risks. However, to minimise the risk to our staff, we have restricted some of our activities and are conducting as much as our investigative activity as we can using technology or alternative ways of working, whilst be mindful not to compromise the collection of evidence or our ability to secure compliance with the HSW Law.
We will continue to investigate serious work-related accidents and incidents, and respond to complaints about working activities where these are exposing people to significant risks. We are also continuing to carry out proactive inspections of construction work, due to the high risk nature of the industry. When visiting a site social distancing and compliance with current GoJ guidance will be followed.
The HSI continues to keep the situation under review and be guided by the advice from the GoJ and Public Health.