Information for frontline staff
If you need to continue seeing and supporting clients, there are a range of steps you can take to protect yourself and others.
In the first instance, discuss your circumstances with your local team and manager Every workplace is different. There may be steps you can take that are specific to your area.
The most important steps are:
- Cough or sneeze into a tissue or barrier, or into your elbow. Do not cough into your hands.
- Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly (20 seconds or more) with soap and water or hand sanitiser.
- Avoid close contact with people who are ill.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- If you have any cold or flu-like symptoms get tested and self-isolate until you have confirmation of a negative text.
- If you have been exposed to a confirmed case you should get tested, but you must also self-isolated for a full 14 days regardless of the result to see if symptoms develop.
Other steps to reduce the risk of infection include:
- Mantain a physical distance of 1.5 metres between you and other people where possible. You should wear a mask while at workIf you can’t maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres in your job, and there are no other mitigations in place, such as sneeze guards. Avoid shaking hands, hugging, or kissing other people.
- Ensure hand sanitiser and/or soap is available in your workplace
- Wipe down surfaces and devices (mobile phone, keyboard, mouse, etc).
Frontline staff who are unable to work from home can reduce the risk of infection by practising social distancing.
DCJ has ordered Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for its frontline staff, including hand sanitiser, gloves and masks. If you’re not sure when to wear PPE see our quick guide.
You can also watch the PPE for combined contact, droplet and airborne precautions video by the Clinical Excellence Commission for guidance on how to put on (don) and take off (doff) PPE. While the video provides guidance for a healthcare setting, the principles can be applied for donning and doffing PPE (such as gloves and masks) within the workplace.
Please refer to the advice from NSW Health about face masks.
Travelling for work
At present there are no public health orders that restrict travel within NSW, however staff should minimise non-essential travel within NSW, which can increase the risk of spreading COVID-19 infections to other communities. It is particularly important to minimise travel to remote indigenous communities.
Where travel is essential, it should be undertaken with approval, and using appropriate hygiene and WHS controls.
If community transmission in NSW increases, restrictions could be introduced.
Travel across state boundaries
From 1am Saturday 8 August, all of NSW and ACT are considered ‘COVID-19 hotspots’ under the QLD Border Restrictions Direction (No 11). This means that NSW residents or those who have been in NSW in the past 14 days are not eligible for a Border Pass, unless they fall into certain categories. Those who do fall into those categories are required to undergo hotel quarantine for 14 days upon arrival at their own cost.
Restrictions on the VIC/NSW border remain in place, under Public Health (COVID-19 Border Control) Order.
Interaction with clients in their homes or in our offices
If you need to visit clients at home or receive them in the office for an appointment, call your clients ahead of time and ask them:
- “Have you or anyone in your household returned from any overseas travel within the last 14 days?”
- “Is anyone exhibiting flu-like symptoms or any of the symptoms associated with coronavirus?”
- “Have you or anyone in your household been required to isolate?”
If the answer is yes, you should assess whether the visit can be delayed or business carried out over the phone.
There may be occasions when you cannot phone ahead if your visit is to someone who does not know you are coming. In this case, you can ask the same questions shortly after arriving or receiving your client. In many cases, other people who know the household will be involved and you can ask them if they know the answers to these questions.
Posters about how to wash your hands and other resources to use in your workplace are available from the NSW Health website.
Interacting with clients in the community
If your role involves interacting with clients in the community. It is important that in the first instance you discuss your circumstances with your local team and manager. Following good hygiene practices helps to prevent the spread of infection.
Information for staff in custodial settings
Corrective Services NSW is working closely with Justice Health and Forensic Mental Health Network and NSW to prevent and manage potential and confirmed cases of COVID-19.
Detailed information for staff in custodial settings is available on the intranet and is directly communicated to Corrective Services NSW staff as required.
Information for visitors to correctional centres can be found on the Corrective Services NSW website.
Information for frontline child protection and OOHC staff
Detailed information for frontline child protection and OOHC staff is on the Casework Practice site (intranet).
Information for frontline housing staff
Detailed information for frontline housing staff is on the Housing Hub (intranet).