Supporting the return to the workplace of shielding employees

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Guidance for employers on supporting the return to the workplace of shielding employees has been published on the Healthy Working Wales website.

During the response to the Covid-19 pandemic, clinically extremely vulnerable staff received a letter from the Chief Medical Officer, GP or NHS consultant advising them to stay at home.

Following the pausing of shielding on August 16, organisations have been asked to consider how to support employees returning to the workplace.

The guidance on the Healthy Working Wales website, adapted from guidance developed by NHS Wales, includes top tips for managers in supporting their employees and covers the following areas:

  • How shielding employees may be feeling about returning to work
  • Whether it is sufficiently safe and essential for the employee to return to work
  • Undertaking a risk assessment before employees return to work and
  • Resources for emotional and mental wellbeing

The Leader, Cllr Huw David, said: “Shielding employees may have had limited exposure to public areas for a number of months and many will be very anxious about returning to the workplace.  They may therefore require additional support prior to and following their return to the workplace.

“Where it is identified by a manager that it is essential that an employee needs to return to the workplace to fulfil their role, they should only be invited back when it is sufficiently safe for them to do so, as determined by government guidance and the COVID-19 Risk Assessment outcome.

“Prioritising the physical and mental health of your workforce is essential to ensure they can continue to work effectively in the long-term.”