As part of keeping you in our focus during the coronavirus pandemic, our executive people update ensures you’re on top of the latest changes in legislation, case and employment law trends. Click here for more information about how we can support you to manage the latest changes.
The NHS track and trace system has launched today (without the anticipated mobile app). Contact tracers will be making contact via email, text and phone calls if you have been in contact with someone who has tested positive for coronavirus. You will be asked to self-isolate for 14 days and “do not go to work, school, or public areas, and do not use public transport or taxis“. Guidance for employers has been issued.
If you or your employees are contacted by the scheme, you’ll be directed to this website. The tracer will provide you the details necessary to sign into the website. You should explain to employees the importance of remaining vigilant against hoax or scam calls as contact tracers will not ask for personal details over the phone unless you’re unable to access the internet.
SSP claims portal and regulation amendments
If you have less than 250 employees, you’re now able to claim back SSP from the government if it has been paid due to coronavirus. You can access the claims portal and further details here.
Amendments have been made to the SSP Regulations to mean that employees told to self-isolate at home for 14 days by the track and trace scheme are eligible for SSP.
Updated shielding guidance
The government is now advising people to shield until 30 June 2020. This is important if you’re planning to unfurlough employees coming to the end of the period of 12 weeks explained in their initial shielding letter. You can find the specific paragraph here, or the full guidance here.
Record keeping during the pandemic
You must now keep a record for six years (previously five) of any correspondence to your employees putting them on, or taking them off furlough and any claims that you’ve made. We’d recommend keeping a record of all decisions made during the pandemic for the same period of time to provide a robust audit and evidence trail (should you need to rely on it).
A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste are now classed as main symptoms of coronavirus. This is along with a high temperature and a new, continuous cough.