Ensuring Safety of Personnel from COVID-19
- In order to ensure the safety of personnel at a heritage site or institution, identify those who may be more exposed to the risk of infection, e.g. staff who manage visitors or dispose waste. Ensure these personnel have personal protective equipment.
- If your heritage site or institution is an area where Social Distancing measures are in place, consult with local emergency management authorities to decide whether to close your premises or to stay partially open. In either case encourage non-essential staff to work from home.
- For essential services staff such as security guards or facility maintenance staff, provide personal safety briefings as well as necessary equipment (see link below).
- Regularly update yourself on the COVID-19 guidelines/advisories issued by the World Health Organization (WHO).
- Follow governmental health advisories on sanitation and hygiene.
- Request staff to monitor their own health and remain in isolation, if they show even mild symptoms or have recently been in touch with a COVID-positive person.
- Make sure that hand washing facilities and hand sanitizer is installed at the site to reinforce health and safety of staff, visitors and the immediate community of the site or institution.
- The COVID-19 virus can live on surfaces ranging from a couple of hours to a number of days. Therefore, keep all work surfaces clean.
- Caution: Do not use bleach or other such chemicals on historic surfaces or objects. The best option is to isolate the infected heritage space.
- Establish guidelines for the staff to ensure their safety while entering the office, working and at the time of leaving e.g. protocols for washing, cleaning and disinfecting. Refer to the Response Plan of George Town World Heritage Incorporated (GTWHI – link below) as an example.
Contributions by Ang Ming Chee, Celina Rincon, Kene Onukwube