Updated Dec 21 2020
At Drake International, we hold ourselves to a high standard of client communication. Over the past few months, we have been monitoring all communication from the Government and Health Agencies in Australia. It has become clear the world is facing an unprecedented challenge. Like you, we are deeply concerned and want to do what we can to help keep our employees, field staff employees, candidates, clients, and their families and communities, safe and healthy during this time of uncertainty.
Here’s what we are doing:
- We are in the process of transitioning our operations and staff back to the office and returning to business as usual as much as possible.
- Drake continues to remotely register candidates, to ensure the quality of services is maintained.
- The introduction of additional screening using a COVID-19 Health Questionnaire and risk assessment of all candidates.
- We are upholding a strict self-isolation policy for anyone who is a risk and are asking all team members to avoid all non-essential activities outside of work.
- We have briefed employees, casual employees, and candidates on the importance of frequent hand washing and social distancing and have increased the availability of hand sanitiser and disinfectant wipes to maintain proper hygiene in all Drake locations across Australia.
- We are following all Government guidelines and acting as ambassadors to communicate that information.
Drake Australia Pty Ltd, as part of its business continuity planning, has established a COVID Response Plan to address the risks associated with Coronavirus (COVID-19). The plan’s purpose is to:
- Provide service and business continuity during any COVID-19 outbreak.
- Identify all risks and mitigation strategies.
- Reduce the risk of the emergence/spread of a potential COVID-19 outbreak at our service to the extent that this is possible.
- Provide reassurance to staff and clients that key risks are being addressed.
For a copy of the COVID Response Plan, please click the button below.
We will continue to track COVID-19 updates and directives from federal and local officials and medical experts and will continue to follow their guidance in the days and weeks ahead. We remain committed to you, our clients, and to doing our part as an organisation to continually support the health and well-being of our field staff employees, candidates, and Drake International team members.
Need access to important COVID-19 information in another language?
Explore a list of resources about COVID-19 in 68 languages. The resources include fact sheets, guidelines and other publications.
Drake COVID response team is currently monitoring the situation of the COVID outbreak in the Northern Beaches of NSW. As of the 21/12/2020, there are currently 87 active cases, including Hotel Quarantine and community transmissions.
The COVID cluster in the Sydney’s northern beaches has increased to 83, with 15 new cases being identified, from more than 38,000 people undertaking a COVID test in the last 24 hours.
The outbreak has now resulted in several borders being closed to those living in and/or have visited the greater Sydney area. The NSW government is taking the all the appropriate steps to minimise the impact that this latest outbreak and keep the community as safe as possible.
If you have any questions, please feel free to call your nearest Drake branch directly.
Does Drake have a COVID Response Plan to ensure business continuity?
As part of our business continuity planning, Drake has developed a COVID Response Plan.
CLICK HERE to view our COVID Response Plan.
What happens if a contractor falls ill or needs to self-isolate?
If a staff member becomes unwell or symptomatic, concerned they have come in contact with a COVID-19 positive, or suspected COVID-19 person. The instructions are as follows:
Step 1 - Contact their Drake consultant immediately on 13 14 48.
Step 2 - The Drake consultant will instruct them to call the COVID-19 hotline for their respective state. This hotline will assist in screening the staff member and give appropriate advice.
Step 3 - If the staff member is told to self-quarantine for safety; the staff member will call their consultant and Drake will work on replacing their remaining shifts with the client until further notice.
Step 4 - All affected parties will be informed.
What if a temporary or casual worker tests positive for COVID-19, the instructions are:
Step 1 – Casual worker to contact their Drake consultant immediately on 13 14 48.
Step 2 - Drake will advise to self-quarantine immediately.
Step 3 - Drake will inform the client immediately.
Step 4 – Drake will inform every other casual Drake worker on site and advise to self-quarantine until further notice.
Step 5 – Drake will attempt to provide a replacement team to provide continuation of services to the client once the site is confirmed as risk free, however, this will be determined based on each individual circumstance.
Will Drake be communicating to Casual Employees how absences will be paid should they fall ill or need to self-isolate?
All Drake employees and labour-hire workers have been advised for the financial support available to them, in the event their employment is impacted by COVID-19.
Are staff entitled to sick pay if they have Coronavirus?
If an employee is entitled to sick leave, then they will be covered if they experience flu-like symptoms of have been confirmed to have contracted the COVID-19 virus or have come into close contact with someone or visited a ‘hotspot’ area and have been instructed to self-isolate or Quarantine.
If the employee is not entitled to sick leave, they will be provided with the details of the relevant government’s financial support programs they can apply for.
Can casual staff be requested to work from home?
This will be at the discretion of the client and Drake. Some clients have requested this right and Drake has determined to grant it.
Can staff be required to attend work even if they would prefer to work from home?
For casual employees, the nature of their employment is that it is meant to be intermittent. They can work at their discretion. If a staff member has accepted shifts from Drake, however, then they are required to attend unless they can show evidence of being ill or unless they’re on unpaid carer’s leave.
Who needs to wear a face mask?
In some states (for example NSW) wearing face masks is mandatory, including when travelling on public transport or car share services (taxi, Uber). However, the COVID situation can spread to anywhere at any time, therefore it is recommended to remain updated on the government rules and restrictions. This is especially important when there is an outbreak.
Are there any exemptions to this rule?
There are some exceptions to this rule, including:
- when driving on your own or with members of your immediate household (but everyone in the car must have a face mask with them). If they are travelling with people not from their immediate household, everyone must wear a face mask or covering whilst inside and outside the vehicle.
- Medical reasons that make wearing a mask or covering impracticable.
- When entering banks and other financial institutions (for security reasons), but a face mask or covering must be worn prior to and after entering the bank or financial institution.
Do workers need to wear a face mask at work?
Wearing face masks at work is not mandatory at this stage; however, this requirement may also be required at various workplaces and/or for various industries. it is recommended to remain updated on the government rules and restrictions.
Is there a penalty for breaching these rules?
Not at this stage; however as seen in Melbourne, if this rule becomes mandatory, then fines may apply. It is recommended to remain updated on the government rules and restrictions.
Where do I get a face mask?
You can purchase cloth masks or surgical masks from retail outlets including chemists, hardware stores and other shops or you can follow our directions to make your own cloth mask.
What are the different types of face masks and which one should I use?
The term ‘face mask’ includes cloth masks and single-use face masks (commonly called surgical masks). Both masks are suitable for use to prevent the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).
Cloth masks are any nose and mouth covering made of washable fabric. We recommend a cloth mask made of three layers of a mix of breathable fabrics to ensure adequate protection. It does not need to be surgical quality to be effective.
Surgical masks are made with a non-woven meltblown polypropylene layer and available in various levels of protection. These are single use masks only so can’t be washed and used again.
There are other types of masks and respirators (such as P2 or N95). These are not recommended for use in the community and not advised to be used outside of healthcare or specific industries under health advice.
A scarf or bandana does not offer the same amount of protection as well-fitted face masks. This is due to the type of fabrics they are made from. Properly constructed cloth masks are made from at least three layers of materials, including a water-resistant outer layer.
How do I wear a mask correctly?
A cloth mask should fit securely around the face, specifically covering the nose and the mouth areas. The mask should fit snugly on your face and be secured by ties at the back of your head or ear loops. If you are using a mask with ear loops, you can use a plastic clip or tie to join the ends together at the back of your head to make sure it fits snugly on your face.
Make sure that your mask does not have holes or a valve. This can result in breathing out the virus if you have coronavirus (COVID-19).
Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or use hand sanitiser that is made up of over 60% alcohol before putting it on and after taking it off. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth at all times and store used face masks in a plastic bag until you have an opportunity to wash them.
Surgical mask (single use)
- Before putting on the mask, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water, or use a hand sanitiser that is made up of over 60% alcohol.
- Check for defects in the mask, such as tears or broken loops.
- Position the coloured side of the mask outward.
- If present, make sure the metallic strip is at the top of the mask and positioned against the bridge of your nose.
- If the mask has:
- Ear loops: Hold the mask by both ear loops and place one loop over each ear.
- Ties: Hold the mask by the upper strings. Tie the upper strings in a secure bow near the crown of your head. Tie the bottom strings securely in a bow near the nape of your neck.
- Dual elastic bands: Pull the bottom band over your head and position it against the nape of your neck. Pull the top band over your head and position it against the crown of your head
- Mould the bendable metallic upper strip to the shape of your nose by pinching and pressing down on it with your fingers.
- Pull the bottom of the mask over your mouth and chin.
- Be sure the mask fits snugly.
- Don’t touch the mask once in position.
- If the mask gets soiled or damp, replace it with a new one.
When is it safe to take my face mask off?
You can remove it outside, once you are away from other people, or in your car on your way home. If it is a cloth mask, don’t forget to bring your cloth mask inside to be cleaned. If you wait to take your cloth mask off until you have returned home, it may be easier to put it directly into the laundry.
What’s the best way to take off a face mask?
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitiser containing at least 60% alcohol.
- Don’t touch the front of the mask or your face.
- Carefully remove your mask by grasping the ear loops or untying the ties. For masks with a pair of ties, unfasten the bottom one first, then the top one.
- If your mask has filters, remove them and throw them away. Fold the mask and put it directly into the laundry or into a disposable or washable bag for laundering. Single use surgical masks should be disposed of responsibly.
- Clean your hands again.
Can I reuse my face mask?
A cloth mask can be washed and re-used. It is a good idea to have at least two, so you always have a clean one available.
When leaving home, there might be times when you can’t maintain 1.5 metres distance from other people and wear a cloth mask, and times when you can maintain the distance and don’t need to wear a cloth mask. For instance, you might take crowded public transport to and from work, but at work be able to maintain appropriate distancing. Don’t reuse the same cloth mask to go home that you used earlier on the same trip to go to work. Put each used cloth mask into a zip lock bag to be taken home for washing. For each new situation put on a clean cloth mask.
Carry a paper bag or zip lock bag with you to carry clean masks and keep them clean.
Single use masks are for single-use only and should be disposed of responsibly in the rubbish bin.
Has Drake provided worker permits?
Government implemented worker permits are no longer required, however there are Border permits and declarations that may/will be required to legally cross borders or enter another state. It is recommended to remain updated on the government rules and restrictions.