New Guidance- Social Distancing has changed to 1 metre plus. 05/07/2020
COVID 19 POLICY 22/06/2020
HAL engages with members of the general public to provide tertiary education, regulated vocational training and conference facilities. As a result, there is a high footfall of people travelling to, from and throughout our premises. Social contact can take place for an extended period of time and in some instances in close proximity. This poses challenges when trying to control the spread of COVID-19.
We will implement arrangements that provide an ongoing solution throughout this crisis. We will raise our awareness of how to stop the spread of COVID-19, implement a Social Distancing Policy, routinely assess risk, adhere to all control measures and commit to making fundamental changes to normal practice.
All persons are advised, in advance, NOT to attend any of our premises if they are showing any COVID-19 symptoms.
In light of the pandemic, it is necessary for us to change our traditional approach to training, conferences and events. To continue to provide a high level of service we will be adapting our facilities to protect the wellbeing of our staff, apprentices, delegates and visitors. We will provide all attendees with a robust induction to ensure that everyone understands what is required of them before they attend the training centre. This induction includes the attached policy and other interactive tools made available on our website. We will supply joining instructions for all delegates and learners, which will advise that if you feel unwell and are displaying any symptoms of COVID-19, that you should inform us as quickly as possible and you should not attend the training.
HAL is committed to maintaining ‘COVID-19 Secure’ guidelines and we will adhere to the ‘5 steps to working safely’ as released by the UK government. We will also align ourselves with recent guidance for the education setting as released by the Department for Education.
Roles and responsibilities
Leaders, managers and staff will review the strategy fortnightly to ensure continuing effectiveness, and adhere to all governing bodies’ guidance. All persons attending our sites will be held accountable for and must comply with this strategy.
People who feel unwell while attending HAL TRAINING
In the event that a person feels unwell, with even the mildest symptoms, they will be sent home. If the person is waiting to be collected, they will isolate in a well-ventilated room, with signs to restrict access. If this is not possible, they shall be asked to wait in a well-ventilated area at least 2 metres away from other people. If they need to go to the bathroom while waiting to be collected then they should use a separate bathroom. The isolation room/area and bathroom shall be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected using the appropriate cleaning products.
Should the person then test positive for coronavirus they must use the NHS Test and Trace. However, we will also inform all persons they made contact with at HAL. The class or group within their setting shall subsequently be sent home and advised to self-isolate for 14 days.
In order to manage the volume of persons attending our premises, training schedules and class sizes will be reduced. Travel around our premises shall be limited by implementing one-way routes and dedicated access/egress points. Delegates shall be managed in their classes and throughout their course, including at break/rest periods. By maintaining smaller class sizes, the risk to others shall be reduced by eliminating unnecessary contact with high volumes of people, limiting the risk of direct or indirect transmission. Areas shall be clearly marked to identify restricted, limited or dedicated access zones. Delegates will be asked to comply in full with our social distancing control measures, or risk being removed from the course/premises. Equipment required to deliver the course (i.e. tools, diagnostics, laptops) will be disinfected before use and equipment will not be shared. Cleaning materials have been made available and are as near to equipment/workstations as possible.
Social Distancing Policy
Access/egress of premises, including car parking
Each parking bay is a minimum of 2.4 metres wide and customers are advised to reverse park and only attempt to park when there is suitable space available. Park within the designated space and leave enough room for others to safely exit their vehicle. Please be patient and wait until the driver next to you is at a 2-metre distance (or government guideline distance) before you leave your vehicle.
Once on the premises, you will notice that the entrance to each site has been redesigned to incorporate social distancing measures. At the entrance to each of our premises you will be invited to enter and sanitise your hands. You will then make your way to a check-in desk, provide your name and the course you are to attend, and we will confirm your attendance and provide clear directions. Please only enter the premises a few minutes before the course/appointment start time. If you arrive at our premises prior to this then wait in your vehicle or safely outside. HAL will no longer provide a dedicated waiting area to support early arrivals. All courses and appointment times will be staggered to allow for safe access/egress from the premises.
There will be no physical interaction, i.e. handshakes or signing in. The passing of documents must only be done if they have been sanitised and are dry. Lanyards/visitors passes will no longer be provided. All attendance should be by appointment only. We have removed pens and stationery from reception. We have appointed key support staff to assist access/egress of persons, to avoid choke points/bottlenecks. You will be invited to sanitise your hands upon exit. Please exit safely, at all times allowing for a 2-metre distance (or government guideline distance). Please drive in accordance with the onsite speed limit and if you have a passenger, ensure that the vehicle is well ventilated.
Welfare and catering
Catering facilities and staff canteens shall remain closed during social distancing restrictions. Break times shall be staggered and coordinated across course schedules to ease access to toilets and smoking areas. Please adhere to these times in order to achieve social distancing. Also, please note that you must follow the guided walkways to access these facilities, which means a longer route to make at break times. Self-service facilities shall be removed (i.e. coffee and snack vending machines) and attendees will have to provide their own food and drink throughout the day. If plates, glasses or cups are required, you will be allocated them and use those same items throughout the duration of your course. Tea and Coffee facilities are to be wiped down after every person, sanitising wipes and spray is provided. Lunch will be either a pack up brought by the candidate or staggered lunch times so they can go and get their own lunch. (Lunch times will be extended)
Expectations will be clearly communicated with dedicated posters, floor markings and signs. We will also use our website to clearly set out all expectations and measures. Communications will be easy to follow and will highlight everyone’s requirements. On arrival at our premises, dedicated hosts will be available to guide and assist visitors. Delegates will receive joining instructions which are adapted to convey, in advance, the course start times, classroom name and changes to our premises. During the booking process, attendees shall be asked to confirm that they DO NOT have any symptoms of COVID-19, have NOT tested positive and have fulfilled any 7- or 14-day isolation periods if necessary.
Cleaning staff have been suitably trained to deliver a deep and thorough clean of our premises at the end of each day. Routinely throughout the day, we will also undertake a deep cleaning of toilets and regular disinfecting of frequently used surface areas/touchpoints.
All workstations will be disinfected by staff at the start and end of the day. Staff have been made aware that they are responsible for cleaning their own work area, tools, vehicles and equipment throughout the day. This routine should also be in place when staff change over work zones/shifts.
Any waste generated from people that are symptomatic, or in an area where people have been symptomatic, should be double-bagged, tied securely and set aside for 72 hours before disposal, in accordance with government guidance.
We require all persons to maintain good personal hygiene at all times. Persons are asked not to wear a neck tie as part of business attire. The COVID-19 virus may remain viable on items of clothing for up to 72 hours, so please wear freshly laundered clothing and routinely launder clothing throughout the course duration – this includes jackets/outerwear.
Tissues, blue roll and other items used to catch a sneeze/cough must be discarded promptly and thereafter, hands washed for a minimum of 20 seconds. Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth.
Handwashing is imperative in limiting the risk of spread/contamination. All persons should be encouraged to regularly wash their hands throughout the day, and this should be prioritised over the use of hand sanitisers.
Hand sanitiser stations are set up at main entry/exit points and in other key areas/zones. Hand sanitiser contains a minimum 60% alcohol content in order to be effective. Stock levels will be monitored and replenished routinely from our approved procurement streams. Important: please note that hand sanitiser is flammable and should not be used by anyone working with hot surfaces or heated equipment. If it is used, it needs to have fully evaporated before continuing with any routine works that involve heat. Keep hand sanitiser away from heat, hot surfaces, sparks, open flames and other ignition sources, and do not smoke/vape if hands are not completely dry.
Personal protective equipment (PPE)
The majority of staff shall not require PPE, other than that deemed necessary for existing job requirements. All learning techniques that would compromise social distancing shall be restricted wherever possible (non–essential). PPE will be made available only if absolutely necessary. Gloves are available on entry but the candidate can bring their own if they want to.
Wearing a face covering or face mask in an education setting is not recommended under current government guidelines. Face coverings may be beneficial for short periods indoors where there is a risk of close social contact with people you do not usually meet and where social distancing and other measures cannot be maintained – for example, on public transport or in some shops. This does not apply to schools or other education settings. We therefore do not require staff, apprentices, delegates and visitors to wear face coverings. Through personal preference you are welcome to wear a face covering; however, it must be worn in line with government advice. Before and after putting it on you must thoroughly wash your hands, and limit the times you touch your face. If the covering is reusable, you must wash regularly at 60°C. Face coverings should not be worn, in any circumstances, by those who may not be able to handle them as directed (i.e. young children). Poor handling may inadvertently increase the risk of transmission.
Field assessing/advising staff
Training managers across all disciplines shall assess and amend practices, updating learning outcomes to reflect alternative learning techniques that shall promote social distancing. All trainers, assessors, development coaches and health and safety advisors, prior to returning to work, shall be inducted on changes to their respective departments, roles and any individual requirements. Staff employed in traditional field-based roles, where possible will work from home. Where this is not possible due to essential works, visits to third parties shall be assessed to ensure staff can carry out works safely and in compliance with government guidelines. All third-party venues shall be subject to a review by our health and safety advisors, and will be advised to provide us with their social distancing policy and a dedicated COVID-19 risk assessment to ensure that our staff are safe while on their premises.
We have established a blended work model for sales staff – office-based rotation and working from home. Our sales teams will also manage processes via email/telephone and remotely via supporting software applications. Face-to-face meetings shall remain prohibited during social distancing restrictions. Office environments shall be so spaced to allow for 2-metre social distancing with desks set up to support side-by-side or back-to-back work methods. Printers are set up to prohibit job retention to avoid keypad use. All equipment required for each job function will be disinfected before use and equipment should not be shared (including vehicles). Cleaning materials have been made available and are as near to equipment/workstations as possible.
Meeting rooms should not be used (where space access is restrictive). Use Teams/Skype (where available).
Document signing and cash handling
The requirement for signatures (both handwritten and digital) should be minimised and proof should be gathered by other means such as via email, a photograph or another suitable alternative that remains compliant. Employees should use their own pen and customers should be offered a new pen. Document signing at an apprentice’s or client’s workplace should follow a similar process. Employees should wear gloves and place signed documents in a clear wallet that is wiped down between exchanges. Ask the customer to use their own pen and always step back 2 metres between exchanges.
Bank transfers should be encouraged wherever possible and the handling of cash eliminated or reduced significantly. Cash should be handled using protective gloves and sealed safely in a cash deposit bag. Then use a disinfectant wipe to clean the bag and allow it to dry. Ask a colleague to place the bag in the safe – do not touch the bag with your gloves on once cleaned. Carefully remove the gloves and thoroughly wash your hands for 20 seconds before handling any other items.
First aid provisions
If you need to help an individual who is symptomatic and may have COVID-19, wherever possible, place the person away from others. If there is no separate space or it is unsafe to move the injured person, ask others who are not involved in providing assistance to stay at least 2 metres away. If barriers or screens are available, these may be used. Wear disposable gloves and a fluid repellent surgical face mask, face visor and disposable apron before helping them. Wash hands thoroughly before and after treatment. If there is blood or bodily fluids, segregate the area wearing PPE and place a spill kit or cover with paper towels. Contact the facilities team to arrange professional cleaning as necessary. Should CPR be required, it is recommended that you do NOT provide rescue breaths and perform chest compressions only. If a decision is made that rescue breaths are necessary, use a one-way face shield, which should be disposed of in line with guidance for medical waste. Thereafter, the first aider should monitor themselves for symptoms and self-isolate for 14 days, if necessary.