Latest COVID Updates - 22 Nov 20

There are a number of significant changes to the COVID Safe requirements for seasonal horticulture workplaces for you to be aware of. Effectively, in the context of continuing zero COVID case days, the Additional Obligations Directions and Workplace Directions have been wound back significantly.
Two new Workplace Directions were issued and became effective on 22 November 11.59 pm – Additional Obligations No 13 and Workplace Directions No 10.
The new Workplace Additional Obligations Directions No 13 replaces the previous Directions:

  • Removes certain obligations from the listed industries such as having a High Risk COVIDSafe Plan, cleaning logs and PPE training plan
  • Removes the requirement for surveillance testing for seasonal horticultural work
  • Removes the requirements for employers to supply face coverings to seasonal workers and ensure that all seasonal workers at the seasonal Work Premises wear a face covering at all times
  • Removes the requirement on all industries (except for care facilities, hotel quarantine and ports of entry) for employers to require workers to make declarations at the start of each shift
  • Retains the requirement for record keeping, separation of workers through bubbles, and increased cleaning.

While seasonal horticulture businesses do not have to have a 'seasonal horticulture worker COVIDSafe Plan', all businesses must have a COVID safe plan in place that addresses the COVID related risks of the business and the requirements of the Additional Obligations Directions.
DHHS may still look to undertake some voluntary surveillance testing of seasonal horticulture farms. We are seeking some further information on this.