As a youth service providing services and resources to some of the most vulnerable people in our community, it's important to plan for how corona virus COVID-19 developments may impact your activities. Information on what you need to do to provide a safe environment for your staff and clients is constantly changing. Reputable sources like the NSW Health Website and the World Health Organisation Website are constantly updating their resources with reliable instructions for how to prepare.
Step 1: Planning
How Do I Begin?
A good way to begin is to think about what the next three months look like for your service. Start planning what you will do to keep your service running and how you can provide the safest environment for your staff and clients.
Things to consider
What plan do you have for your service if:
You have a staff member or client who has been tested positive for the COVID-19 virus
Your location is hit with a travel ban
Your area is put under a self-isolation ban
Your clients become isolated due to self-isolation or quarantine
Your daily operations are restricted
Your clients that need extra support and services become sick
Times of crisis create psychological challenges and anxiety, creating a mental health plan for your response will help prepare your service to support staff and clients. Coordinating with other services could take the pressure off at this time. Think of ways to collaborate, like potentially creating a resource map for your area.
The Australian Association of Social Work have created a quick and useful guide to supporting clients through the COVID-19 pandemic. Access the guide here.
Step 2: Actioning
Plan for the Next Few Weeks
Create a response plan to action if one of your staff or client’s contract COVID-19
Set up workplace protocol for staff who become sick see the WHO guidelines for ‘Getting Workplace Ready’
Cancel any medium to large meetings or gatherings
Consider other options for running meetings or events wherever possible – can you video call or phone call instead? Can you create a webinar instead of a group meeting?
Think about communication channels – how will you notify any changes or updates to your clients/community?
If you have contract negotiations in the next few weeks, contact your CPO to discuss.
Employment Rights & Obligations
- Coronavirus & Australian Workplace Laws information from the Fairwork Ombudsman.
- FAQ: COVID-19 (Coronavirus) Employer rights and obligations.
- COVID–19: Workplace Checklist for Union Delegates and Health and Safety Representatives.
- Recent media releases from Treasury.Gov regarding employee, employer economical support during COVID-19 pandemic.
For an example of a model epidemic/pandemic policy for your organisation visit Our Community
For current health advice on COVID-19 keep up to date through the WHO website, and the NSW Health Website
Call Youth Action
If you require extra support or just need to talk it out with someone external to your organisation. Call Youth Action's Youth Sector Development Manager Freya for support or assistance (02) 8354 3700
Information for service providers about novel coronavirus, COVID-19, managing impacts to service delivery and notifying DCJ
Helping children cope with stress during the COVID-19 pandemic
Hand washing advice
Ways to stop the spread
When to notify the doctor
Frequently updated World Health Organisation information on COVID-19
Frequently updated NSW Health information on COVID-19
Australian Association of Social Work Corona Virus info