Updated: April 22, 2020
While we’ve discussed social distancing at length, below are some further points on social distancing:
Social distancing is not just limited to your workplace; it also pertains to what is happening before and after work, including how people arrive at work (via carpool, via public transit, etc.).
Consider staggering shifts, breaks, and usage of restrooms and changing rooms. Consider rearranging break rooms, cafeterias, and outside spaces to allow people to maintain appropriate social distance.
Utilize disposable paper towels (not hand dryers or cloth towels).
For smoking and break areas, ensure individuals are not sharing drinks, cigarettes, or anything with respiratory droplets.
Evaluate your inventory of cleaning/disinfecting/sanitation supplies and equipment. Consider having at least a 14-day supply on hand (if applicable).
the Food Industry
Off-Site and Carpool Social Distancing.
Social distancing is critical for limiting the spread of COVID-19 for your business. While TAG has driven home the concept of “social distancing” in the workplace, social distancing also applies to what is happening before arriving at the door of your facility.
Recently, TAG has fielded many questions about the potential impact of employees carpooling – arriving at work together in a car or a van. Some carpools have two people and other pools up to 5 or 6 people! While you may be enacting social distancing practices at work, the “close contact” from carpooling (both in numbers and proximity) can potentially diminish the effectiveness of social distancing practices onsite (especially if individuals are not wearing masks or enacting other preventive measures). Even if employees are separated from one another in different areas of your facility, the “close-contact” potential of an ill worker – in the carpool – increases the risk of COVID spread.
With most states’ stay-at-home orders beginning to expire over the next couple weeks, and governors making decisions on extending or reopening businesses, social distancing will become even more critical as “close contacts” in public environments increase.
TAG recommends continued social distancing of your workforce in all areas over which you have control. Additionally, it is imperative that your workforce is educated on and understands the need and importance of 24/7 social distancing (not just at work), and wearing of masks when in public. Reinforce reminders for regular handwashing, continue your enhanced cleaning and sanitation processes, and ensure that all workers are wearing masks while on site to help offset the increased potential of spread.
In states that are reopening before case counts decrease or where a well-structured phased-in approach is not in place, ensure workers understand the age-old adage, “Just because you can doesn’t mean you should”. Followed by a more recent one, “If your state opens before you think it should, you can stay home even if others are going out.”
Everyone should practice social distancing (more specifically, physical distancing), not only those who are ill or at higher-risk (e.g. older individuals, pre-existing conditions) but also among healthy individuals so we may "flatten the curve".
Please feel free to use this free poster at your establishment. Please email us (firstname.lastname@example.org) for a copy of this poster (English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, and Chinese - simplified, traditional are available).
As of April 22, 2020 (14:04 ET), there are over 2,611,000 cases (>181,000 deaths) worldwide.
Due to the increasing number of cases in the United States, TAG will move from reporting counts per country to focus on the United States, please see here for the data. For further information regarding worldwide numbers, please refer to John Hopkin University’s aggregate map.
Keep up to date with COVID-19:
Please send us any questions, comments, and/or concerns! We are happy to talk with you.
OR call us at 1-800-401-2239
Get the Insights & Guidance You Need!
Learn how TAG can help your company ensure food safety and brand protection.
Contact us today!