For Employers: Health & Safety for Overseas Travelers
NZKGI would like to take this opportunity to remind kiwifruit employers of your responsibilities around overseas travellers that might be working with you and to provide you with links to further information. It is critical that the kiwifruit industry has in place good procedures that will assist in preventing the spread of Covid-19 in our industry. It is critical to all of our businesses and the regional and even national economy that we are able to pick, pack and ship the 2020 kiwifruit harvest.
If your labour requirements for the season include using overseas travellers, it is important to note that ALL overseas travellers that entered the country after 1am Monday 16 March are required to self-isolate for 14 days. Travellers from category 2 countries are exempt from this rule. The requirement to self-isolate has been put in place by the New Zealand Government to protect the health and wellbeing of all New Zealanders. While workers would have been notified at the point of entry into New Zealand about self-isolation requirements, you will need to make sure that workers have or will undertake the 14 day isolation period before they can work. You can do that by checking the entry date stamp on a worker’s visa. Any person that fails to self-isolate will be subject to deportation by Immigration New Zealand.
What does self-isolation mean
The Ministry of Health has provided information on the rules around self-isolation. You can find that here.
Accommodation requirements for self-isolated workers
If you are providing accommodation to workers that require self-isolation, please ensure you are following the guidelines and are actively ensuring that self-isolation is taking place. The government’s new website dedicated to Covid-19 has information that will assist in planning requirements for self-isolated workers. If you are aware that there are workers who should be self-isolating but they are not, these people are placing our industry and our communities at risk and you should report this to the Police.
All employers in the kiwifruit industry must meet industry hygiene requirements as per Zespri GAP which will help prevent the spread of the virus. You can find a summary of the requirements here https://www.nzkgi.org.nz/what-we-do/communications-adverse-events/coronavirus-information/#content.
You should also put in place procedures for checking the health of your workers on a daily basis and have a process for dealing with workers that may have symptoms. Advice can be found here and if you are looking for information on Covid-19 in other languages, this can be found here. More information on appropriate cleaning regime can be found here.
What to do if a worker becomes unwell while self-isolating
Contact Healthline immediately on 0800 358 5453 if a begins to show signs of Covid – 19
NZKGI will continue to update the industry via our weekly update sent every Friday and we encourage everyone to sign up to receive this (see https://www.nzkgi.org.nz/ bottom right of the page). Any contractors experiencing worker shortages are also encouraged to contact NZKGI and to participate in our labour attraction strategy https://www.nzkgi.org.nz/what-we-do/labour-education/find-a-kiwifruit-job-now/#section or email firstname.lastname@example.org