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October 23, 2009
For immediate release
Government Issues Influenza Advice to Island Employers
Communities, Cultural Affairs and Labour
“Health officials have advised that they are expecting a second wave of the H1N1 Flu Virus will arrive this fall and it will most likely be the main strain of influenza circulating this flu season,” said Minister Bertram. “For some small businesses, having even one or two employees out for a few days can negatively impact operations. As a result, through the Office of Public Safety and our Labour Division, we are encouraging employers to put strategies in place to protect their employees and maintain continuity of operations this fall.”
The following advice may be helpful for Island business owners and operators:
• Take time to create a plan. A thoughtful plan will help keep employees and their families healthy, and can help ensure continued operations for your business.
• Talk with your employees and make sure they are prepared for flu season.
• Encourage measures to reduce the risk of spreading the flu. Regular and frequent hand washing, routine cleaning of commonly touched surfaces, and encouraging workers who are sick to stay home can help keep your workplace and workers healthy.
• Review sick leave policies and ensure your employees understand them.
• Encourage your staff to follow advice of the Chief Health Office, including getting vaccinated against influenza.
• Be aware that additional preparations may be necessary if a more serious outbreak evolves during the fall and winter.
• Public Health Agency of Canada guidelines for employers are available at www.phac-aspc.gc.ca.
“To assist employers and employees prepare for flu season, we have developed an information card,” said Minister Bertram. “The card can be obtained on our Public Safety website at: www.peipublicsafety.ca or copies can be picked up at Access PEI sites and Island Information Service, 11 Kent Street.