8 May 2020 / COVID-19

COVISafe Australia Roadmap

The Prime Minister just spoke to the media following today’s National Cabinet Meeting:

  • Every job matters no matter what you do – every job is essential
  • We’ve been fighting the virus and we’re winning
  • The Gov’t has put place and delivering the economic lifeline to get us through this and buy time
  • Thirdly, particularly today, moving ahead with reopening our economy with a clear plan, a clear framework
  • The next step beyond this is the plan to grow momentum to get the economy back up and running with confidence and plan for growth in the years ahead
  • Today National Cabinet agreed to a 3 step plan to be adopted as part of a national framework to achieve a COVID safe economy and society
  • Plan to move through all of these steps in July
  • We must walk before we run
  • We need be careful to preserve our gains
  • There will be risks, more cases and setbacks – not everything will go to plan
  • There will be inconsistencies – states / territories must move at their own pace and will cut and paste out of this plan to suit their circumstances
  • No one is perfect – everyone is doing their best and we cannot expect otherwise
  • We cannot allow our fear of going backwards stop us going forward
  • plan will get us back where we need to be as quickly as we can
  • Treasury is forecasting 850,000 jobs will be restored in months ahead
  • The Roadmap to a COVIDSafe Australia:
  1. Step 1
    1. greater connections with friends and family
    2. gatherings of 10 people in businesses and public places
    3. 5 people at home
    4. working from home if it works for you and your employer
    5. kids back at schools
    6. local playgrounds and outdoor boot camps (with social distancing and in max group of 10)
    7. retail and small cafes / restaurants reopening (with social distancing)
    8. interstate recreational travel
    9. 30 people allowed at outdoor funerals
    10. 10 people at weddings
  2. Step 2
    1. Gatherings of up to 20 people
    2. Reopening of cinemas, galleries, more retail, organised community support, beauty parlours
    3. Subject to change as things evolve from Step 1 / expert medical advice
  3. Step 3
    1. gatherings of up to 100 people
    2. clearer after first 2 steps
    3. more work to do on this step after 1 and 2 better known
    4. hoping most workers will be back in the workplace
    5. interstate travel likely to resume
    6. pubs clubs and possible gaming venues will reopen
  • National Cabinet has agreed that in July we would have moved through these 3 steps across the country
  • Reinforced that this plan is completely up to states / territories to implement on their own timetable and they are responsible for communicating it to their local people
  • The other 3 criteria to enable the early announcement of easing of restrictions remain the same:
  1. Further medical evidence that the plan would not produce undue risk
  2. Tracing capability
  3. Ability to control any outbreaks
  • Downloading CODVIDSafe app is the most important tool moving forward for people as they start coming into more contact with others from the easing of restrictions (total downloads now at 5.3 million users)
  • For industry and businesses – its all about getting COVIDSafe plans in place for your workplaces and your premises, Safe Work Australia doing excellent work in this area
  • National Cabinet will be reviewing progress of the 3 Step Plan every 3 weeks and implement changes as needed

The CMO’s comments:

  • Updated slideshow shown demonstrating Australia’s flattening of the curve – a small increase in last few days, related to clusters at Meat Works in VIC and Newmarch House aged care in NSW
  • Very low case numbers despite these two clusters
  • Still need to be cautious and wary on our next steps
  • Good news on testing – 730,000 tests to far, just shy of 6900 cumulative cases at the moment, 6 of our 8 states have had several days of no new cases
  • Slide shown with a chart of various measures introduced vs the case numbers to show the impact
  • Roadmap to COVIDSafe Australia Step 1 – Cautious, gentle, not doing too much at once – we are in unchartered territories – not many countries like Australia in the position to start relaxing measures with such low case numbers – we don’t want to lose control – need to make sure cases are managed – everyone must keep practicing social distancing, hygiene, staying home when unwell no matter how mild your cough or sore throat is and every single person with potential symptoms is to have a COVID test
  • Roadmap to COVIDSafe Australia Step 2 – looking at larger gatherings, may be bigger in some states with good COVIDSafe plans, gyms, indoor fitness, cinemas, beauty therapy etc – still a bit of work to be done
  • Roadmap to COVIDSafe Australia Step 3 – much more relaxed, still lots of work to be done – we have more certainty on step 1, but each state / territory will define and how they implement that – hoping for more travel around the country
  • The Gov’t asking the community to keep those personal responsibilities up – distancing and good health – every Australian must do these things
  • If we do the right thing, we can get through the next few months to gradually get us into a COVIDSafe Australia

Answers to media questions:

  • There will be outbreaks moving forward – but we must keep going ahead – that’s why we need to have the plans in place (testing, tracing and controlling) and to ensure Australian’s are doing the right thing (COVIDSafe app, social distancing, hygiene, workplaces with plans)
  • Border restrictions – interstate travel – they are not part of the national baseline – decisions of States / Territories – each will decide when it is prudent to
  • International travel – intl students – there is a possibility in step 3 to look at how students can come back into Australia under strict conditions (still to be worked through, but open to anything to help the economy back and firing again)
  • The Gov’t is acting on bringing projects plans forward to help the economy – they wanted to get through the issues around reopening the economy and now there is a clear plan in place for businesses to prepare – it is now important for states / territories to communicate and implement local plans build confidence
  • Moving forward there is likely going to be a permanent change in the cavalier attitude going of work with a cold or flu – probably two permanent changes – 1) regular good quality hand hygiene and 2) staying at home if you’re unwell mentality – it will help keep others protected

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9 September / Observation

A conversation could change a life.

Today is a reminder of the importance to check in on each other and ask R U OK?

Each of us have experienced the COVID-19 pandemic differently, but it has had an impact on us all. Some of us have been unexpectedly caught behind interstate travel bans, some in extended lockdowns, some living in hotspots, some at home with their families and some away from them.

It has been a challenge for each of us to adjust to new rules and restrictions which we have never had to deal with before.

We have all adapted in our own way to help ourselves and others. We have all done our best despite much of what we knew before having changed in so many ways.

For anyone struggling, know that there are genuine mates and the broader Hutchies’ crew around, people that care about you and are ready to listen and understand.

Now, more than ever, it’s a time to connect openly – a conversation could mean a lot to someone right now.

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25 August / Update

In response to feedback and ongoing reviews of Hutchies' systems, we've updated the Work Health & Safety Management Plan.

These updates better reflect the arrangements to manage health and safety on our projects. Hutchies' WHS Management Plan is used to identify project risks and the controls to be employed on site to manage those risks. 

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31 July / COVID-19

Lockdown announced

On Saturday morning the Queensland Government announced a 3 day lockdown period for the local government areas (LGAs) of South East Queensland (incorporating Brisbane, Gold Coast, Noosa, Sunshine Coast, Ipswich, Logan, Redlands, Moreton Bay, Scenic Rim, Somerset and Lockyer Valley).

The lockdown has now been extended to 4pm Sunday, 8 August at this stage. It has been announced in response to a growing cluster which started with a high school student at Indooroopilly State High School.

The lockdown is also mandatory for anyone who has been in any of the 11x LGAs since 1am this morning and is now elsewhere.

The construction industry is still considered an essential service. Sites will remain open throughout the lockdown period at this stage. Read on for further information.

Stricter lockdown measures

The Queensland Government announced the strictest lockdown measures that the state has experienced so far, due to concern of the rapidly spreading Delta variant.

There are only four reasons to leave home during the lockdown:

  • To buy essential goods / groceries, but only within 10km of your usual place of residence. Supermarkets will be open during the lockdown period. 
  • To go to essential work / school. Childcare is open but only for children of essential workers.
  • For exercise outside, but only within 10km of your usual place of residence. Only allowed to do so with one other person from a different household.
  • For health care. You can leave to get medical care and you can provide care to someone. You can also leave home to get a COVID test or vaccine.

Additional stricter measures have also been introduced to help stop the spread:

  • No visitors allowed at home. The only exception is to care for someone who needs help, but it is recommended to delay if possible.
  • Funerals and weddings limited to 10 people.
  • Mask wearing continues to be mandatory across the 11x LGAs. You must wear a face mask at all times when you leave home, including outdoors and for exercise, unless you have a lawful reason not to.
  • Mask wearing will now be mandatory for everyone at high schools, including students, teachers and visitors in the 11x LGAs.
  • Non-essential businesses must close (eg gyms / hairdressers etc).
  • Restaurants, cafes and other hospitality venues can open but only to provide takeaway.

Hutchies' COVIDSafe sites

Construction remains essential in South East Queensland and it is important to ensure we are all working as hard as possible to keep it open in the face of ongoing outbreaks. All sites should urgently review the latest Hutchies' COVIDSafe Plan and ensure that their site is implementing the following at a minimum:

  • Regular cleaning of all site / office areas and high touch points
  • Mask wearing except when not safe to do so
  • Good hand hygiene
  • Maintaining 1.5m distance from others, including limiting numbers in hoists / lifts and crib / lunch rooms
  • Signing in using your sites' regular sign in process to provide contact details if required for contact tracing
  • Using video / teleconference software to hold meetings

Hutchies' offices in South East QLD

Everyone who works in Hutchies' offices across South East Queensland should be wearing a mask if they are working in an office during the lockdown period.

The Queensland Government has specified that people who can work from home should do so.

All face to face meetings in offices should be cancelled and replaced by video / teleconferences.

Hutchies' Toowong office

These instructions are particularly important in relation to the Toowong office.

The Toowong office is in very close proximity to the current outbreak.

If you can do your job from home, you must. You can go to the office to collect computer gear and anything else you might need to work from home during the lockdown period.

If you do need to go into the Toowong office, you must sign in using the Queensland Government QR code.

You must be wearing a mask at all times, including whilst seated. This is an important measure to stop the spread of airborne particles.

Exposure sites

The Queensland Government has provided an extensive list of exposure sites based on the movements of people who are linked to the Indooroopilly State High School cluster. More venues are expected to be added.

It is very important that anyone who is in, or has been in South East Queensland recently, checks the list daily.

If you have been to any of the venues of concern at the date and time identified, inform your Team Leader, get tested and follow the direction listed by Queensland Health.

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29 July / Update

Edition 1

Recent company snapshots have identified some pinch points in HammerTech utilisation. To assist, additional resources are available so watch this space for regular updates on all things HammerTech.

In this update you'll find:

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28 July / Training

Play the video below to see who has been crowned winner and runner up of Apprentice of the Year, Cadet of the Year and Future Leader of the Year.

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22 July / COVID-19

Keeping people safe

We've made some updates to our COVIDSafe Plan to incorporate the latest requirements across Australia.

All of Hutchies' sites and offices must continue to implement the key COVIDSafe measures we've had in place over the last 12 months, in addition to the latest local state / territory requirements listed below.

Some of the critical aspects of our COVIDSafe plan being focsued on include:
  • Regular cleaning of all site / office areas and high touch points
  • Good hand hygiene
  • Maintaining 1.5m distance from others
  • Signing in to provide contact details if required for contact tracing

The updates we have incorporated into our latest plan (version 4) includes:

Mandatory Check In & Sign In 

It is a requirement for everyone entering a Hutchies site or office that they sign in using our own process (ie HammerTech or Visitor Register) and if mandatory in your local state, must also check in using the government issued QR code system to assist with contact tracing if required.

Mandatory Masks

Masks are mandated in several areas across Australia presently, including New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and parts of South East Queensland. Hutchies' preference is that everyone in these areas, or if you cannot socially distance, wear a mask at all times, when it is safe to do so. 

This plan must be available on your project and to your clients. You should familiarise yourself with the necessary measures and continue to implement all requirements, including completing our weekly COVIDSafe inspection checklists for sites and offices.

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