It is a reminder to employers of their duty to comply with the Government’s Covid-19 restrictions and do everything they can to keep their workplaces safe.
The letter also contains links to vital support and guidance available from the Government and Council.
Working from home, testing and safe workspace: your duty as an employer
As a city employer, we need you to comply with the Government’s Covid-19 restrictions and do everything you can to keep your workplaces safe. The situation is grave and serious. The new variant is highly contagious and spreading at an alarming rate:
- 1 in 40 Wulfrunians have got the virus
- over 2,000 people a week are testing positive in our city
- many more are asymptomatic, unaware they’re carrying and passing on the virus
- NHS hospital admissions are at critical levels - capacity is stretched, more people are in harm’s way and sadly, more people are dying
Your employees should be working from home wherever possible
In line with Government guidance, which can be seen at GOV.UK, we are urging you to direct staff to work from home unless they cannot reasonably work from home. However, if they are required to come into the office or on site, we would expect you as an employer to ensure the Government’s COVID secure guidelines are followed and ensure that your staff are undergoing regular lateral flow testing.
Your responsibility to regularly test your employees
Rapid lateral flow testing identifies people who are infectious on the day of the test but don’t have symptoms. If you do this regularly it will help isolate the spread of the virus and prevent outbreaks. Anyone can now get a lateral flow test without an appointment at one of 4 Covid-19 rapid test centres:
- City of Wolverhampton Council’s Civic Centre (open Monday to Friday from 8am to 7pm and Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm)
- the Jamia Masjid Bilal on Newhampton Road West (10am to 6.30pm daily)
- St Joseph’s Church, Willenhall Road (Monday to Friday, 2pm to 6pm)
- Pendeford Library (Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm and Saturday and Sunday from 10am to 6pm)
If you want to learn more about lateral flow testing and its benefits to your business please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Getting a test for employees with symptoms
Employees with symptoms need to be sent for a full PCR test where the test samples go to a laboratory. To book a PCR test people must pre-book a test online or by calling 119 before going to a test centre. There are a number of PCR test sites in the city at:
- Showell Road Test Centre Car Park, Off Stafford Road, WV10 9LU
- Faulkland Street Car Park, WV1 1JN
- Mountford Lane Car Park, Bilston, WV14 6NF
- Blakenhall Resource Centre, Haggar Street, WV2 3ET
- Whitmore Reans Library, WV6 0QW
All sites are open between 8am and 8pm, 7 days a week.
There is also a drive through testing centre at Aldersley Leisure Village, Aldersley Road, Wolverhampton, WV6 9NW. This site is open between 9am and 3pm, 7 days a week.
General guidance on safety in workplaces that are open
A business should have key measures in place as detailed in the Government’s guidance including, where appropriate, a Covid-19 risk assessment, a contact tracing system to collect the details of customers and visitors, Covid-19 safety signage displayed, a cleaning regime in place, facilities for hand washing, steps taken to maintain a 2 metre distance (and where people cannot maintain 2 metre distancing the business should implement risk mitigation), staff wearing adequate PPE and customers wearing a face covering.
City of Wolverhampton Council’s Commercial Regulation Team are working with businesses and premises across the city to ensure they have the appropriate Covid measures in place. Further advice and details of how you can request an inspection of your premises can be found at Covid Compliant.
As part of the Council’s Covid Compliance scheme, launched last year, the authority is urging people to report concerns and information on rule breaking by businesses online via Report Covid-19 Rule Breaking or by calling the council on 01902 550188. Where we find significant issues of concern in workplaces, we will consider using enforcement powers.
Further information on the latest lockdown restrictions you need to follow can be found at Covid Alert.
At this time, our city’s priorities have to be to protect the most vulnerable, protect the NHS and to save lives. We all have a collective responsibility to deliver this.
Please do everything you can to support our city.
Councillor Ian Brookfield
Leader of the City of Wolverhampton Council