1. Our Commitment
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd is committed to healthy work and well-being by providing guidance about Covid-19 vaccinations and other public health measures. We recognise that vaccination offers the best chance to reduce the likelihood of infection, and the severity of the infection if it does occur. Public health measures provide an additional layer of protection.
Workers are protected by this policy by having a clear understanding of the vaccination requirements of Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd for themselves and their colleagues.
This policy will be made available to all workers, including contractors. New workers will be given a copy of this policy at their induction. Managers and supervisors will remind workers of the policy from time to time.
Covid-19 has created chaos in the personal and work lives of New Zealanders. Vaccination is the Government’s main tool to enable us to return to normal.
This policy outlines our approach to managing Covid-19. It is subject to change when the Covid-19 legislation is amended. The policy does not replace legislative requirements. From time-to-time changes are announced in a manner which makes it difficult to update this policy in a timely manner. If this situation occurs, the policy will be updated at appropriate intervals to capture as many changes as possible at one time. This is likely to be at times of increased community spread.
Fully vaccinated is defined as receiving the appropriate number of injections for the type of vaccine used, and booster injections as recommended by the NZ Government.
3. Our response
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd is committed to supporting workers to be fully vaccinated. We recognise that workers have a range of approaches to vaccination, and we will offer appropriate support. This may include assisting workers to gain further information, providing time off to be vaccinated and to recover from any side-effects.
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd will undertake a Covid-19 vaccination risk assessment to determine which, if any, workers must be fully vaccinated. The risk assessment will consider roles, not individuals, and workers will be consulted. The risk assessment will consider contact with others, the type of work and the requirements of our clients. We will also consider the requirements of other PCBUs we have a working relationship with.
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd will ensure that the individual worker’s privacy is protected as required by the Privacy Act 2020.
We may need to inform customers / clients / stakeholders if all Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd workers are fully vaccinated. Signing your acceptance of this policy will indicate your permission has been given. If you decline to give permission for this, it may have an impact on your ability to consent particular tasks, which may in turn affect your employment so we will discuss this with you to understand your situation.
We require our contractors to comply with the same requirements set out for our employees, based on the type of work they will be undertaking.
We require new employees to be fully vaccinated if they haven’t yet been, prior to commencing employment. Again, if anyone has specific reasons why they cannot be vaccinated, this will be discussed with them on a case-by-case basis.
We will undertake Covid-19 testing as required by our clients or Government requirements. Testing may take the form of PCR nasal swabs, saliva tests or Rapid Antigen Tests. The frequency and type of the testing used will depend on the need. Workers will be informed of the results.
If a worker is required to stand down because of exposure or infection, they will be remunerated in accordance with the Government requirements.
Where the risk assessment shows that mandatory vaccination is required, and a worker refuses to comply, Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd will attempt to find other work for that worker. If this is not possible, the worker will be given a minimum of four weeks’ notice, or longer period if this is in their employment agreement. If the worker has not taken steps to be fully vaccinated within this timeframe, they will be dismissed.
If mandatory vaccinations are not required, Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd will ensure that public health measures are complied with.
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd recognises that workers are not obligated to acknowledge whether they are vaccinated. If the worker refuses to acknowledge their vaccination status, and their role requires mandatory vaccination, it will be assumed that they are not vaccinated. The worker will be subject to the same process as a worker who refuses to comply.
Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd will ensure that workers have access to information and products to use public health measures. These include masks, sanitiser, QR codes and the ability to physically distance as required.
4. Worker obligations
It is the role and responsibility of both the Company and its workers to maintain a safe working environment.
Therefore, workers will:
- Participate in risk assessments.
- Comply with mandatory vaccination unless they are exempt.
- Use the public health measures.
- Scan in at all work locations.
- Inform Mercury Bay Hi-Ab Services Ltd if they are sick or have been a close or casual contact of a positive Covid-19 case.
This policy will be reviewed in May 2022 in line with Part 1, clause 3 (3) of the COVID-19 Public Health Response Act 2020 which provides a two-year repeal date for the Act on the 13th May 2022. It will remain in place only as long as necessary for health and safety reasons.