FAQs about COVID-19

COVID-19 - Q and A

Guidance on Travel, Leave and Flexible Work Arrangements for Public Service Employees
COVID-19  | Government of Canada – March 2020

I’m very worried. My co-worker recently returned to work and was potentially exposed to COVID-19.  Do I have to work in the same environment as them?

Where operationally feasible, managers can make use of the robust Flexible Work Arrangements program available for managers and employees of DND. Telework provides a good option for business continuity purposes. Your co-worker and manager will together explore your co-worker’s options with respect to telework or leave so they can safely self-isolate, if warranted.

Rest assured that DND recognizes your right to refuse work under the Canada Labour Code and will protect your safety and health to every extent possible. Questions concerning refusals to work should be directed to your manager or General Safety Officer or General Safety (D Safe G, VCDS) – OHSSecretariatSST@forces.gc.ca.

I’m an employee considered high risk for COVID-19. What are my options?

Individuals who may have compromised or weak immune systems, pregnant and nursing mothers and employees who are taking care of sick or elderly dependents and/or parents should speak to their manager about flexible work arrangements. Telework may be an option for you. Together with your manager, you may also consider sick, annual, care of family or leave with pay for other reasons, depending on the provisions of your collective agreement.

I’m supposed to be travelling to attend a conference soon.  What should I do?

Please speak to your manager to assess the risk depending on location, timing, duration and size of the conference. All managers should curtail work-related discretionary travel (for training, conferences) in affected locations with travel advisories for Public Service Employees and review other travel arrangements to other non-affected locations on a case-by-case basis.

I’ve had a personal trip booked for some time and I’m due to go soon.  Should I still go?

Public Service Employees are encouraged to monitor and abide by all travel advisories posted by Global Affairs Canada (GAC) and Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) for personal travel.

As a DND Public Service Employee, you are not required to complete Notices of Intent to Travel, however, for employees who have planned personal travel to higher risk locations, you are encouraged to do so in order to be made aware of regional risks prior to travel.

What leave options are available to me in the event I need to self-isolate?

There are various leave options available to civilian employees in the context of COVID-19, where illness may impact you and/or your families and DND supports the use of appropriate

leave for self-isolation measures. This may include sick, annual, care of family or leave with pay for other reasons, depending on the provisions of your collective agreement.

Employees who are ill/displaying symptoms should use sick leave.

For employees who are returning from affected regions or for employees who travel to a non-affected region which becomes affected during the employee’s travel, DND supports the use of leave with pay for other reasons, when telework is not possible.  Employees should feel safe to confide in management and self-isolate without financial penalty or worry.

For employees who choose to travel for personal reasons to areas designated as affected regions prior to their departure and against the advice of the posted advisories, the employee should extend their annual leave or use compensatory leave for the period of self-isolation upon their return.

Where can I find more information?

Additional information is available at:

WWW.CANADA.CA/EN/PUBLIC-HEALTH/SERVICES/DISEASES/2019-NOVEL-CORONAVIRUS-INFECTION.HTML 

HTTPS://WWW.CANADA.CA/EN/PUBLIC-HEALTH/SERVICES/DISEASES/2019-NOVEL-CORONAVIRUS-INFECTION/FREQUENTLY-ASKED-QUESTIONS.HTML    

HTTPS://TRAVEL.GC.CA

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