Novel Coronavirus Statement
Publish date: Monday, January 27, 2020
According to Health Canada, on December 31, 2019 a cluster of cases of pneumonia were reported in Wuhan, China, and the cause has now been confirmed as the new 2019 Novel Coronavirus. Known in the media as the coronavirus or the Wuhan coronavirus, this illness is in the same family as SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome). A thorough list of FAQs on the coronavirus, including symptoms, transmission, travel precautions, and government actions is available HERE. The Government of Canada has taken measures to mitigate the risk of introduction and spread of disease and have stated that while the risk of an outbreak of the coronavirus in Canada remains low, you should tell your health care professional if you have travelled to an affected area of China, and have developed flu-like symptoms. PEA members in some sectors (such as healthcare) have a greater likelihood of exposure to viruses and employers have a general duty to take every precaution reasonable to provide protection. Employers in these sectors should already have effective plans in place for regular day-to-day interactions; however, if you are concerned about your occupational safety or your employer's workplace response to the coronavirus, please connect with your labour relations officer. As we continue to monitor the situation, common practices to reduce the likelihood of becoming infected by any viral infection still hold: wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, avoid touching your face, and avoid close contact with people who are sick.