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WorkSafeBC engaging with industry to remind employers and workers to prioritize COVID-19 health and safety ahead of long weekend

Published on: February 12, 2021

Lunar New Year, Valentine’s Day and Family Day celebrations could increase crowds

Richmond, B.C. — WorkSafeBC is engaging with industry to remind employers and workers to stay focused on their COVID-19 safety plans as we head into the long weekend.

“With events like Lunar New Year, Valentine’s Day and Family Day all taking place over a few days, there’s an increased risk of large gatherings and crowds. Our message to employers is to stay true to your COVID-19 safety plan, implement it to the letter and apply it to all aspects of your business, as situations in your workplace might change,” says Al Johnson, Head of Prevention Services for WorkSafeBC.

All employers in B.C. are required to develop a COVID-19 safety plan that assesses the risks to workers and implements measures to prevent the transmission of COVID-19 in the workplace. The plan must be reviewed and updated as conditions change, such as a significant increase in customers.

To assist employers, WorkSafeBC has developed the resource: Reviewing and updating your COVID-19 safety plan: A guide for employers, available at

WorkSafeBC’s Consultation and Education Services team has been working with B.C. industry to help promote occupational health and safety during the pandemic and keep workplaces safe.


Ian Tostenson, President and CEO of the BC Restaurant and Foodservices Association
“B.C. restaurants and foodservices establishments put the health and safety of their staff and customers as their top priority. Our members will be ready for a potential increase in customers. COVID-19 safety plans are in place, and all safety measures will continue to be followed, including adhering to occupancy limits that allow for physical distancing.”

Krista Bax, CEO of go2HR
“Our team has been doing significant outreach and helping B.C. employers, especially smaller and mid-sized businesses, by offering to review their COVID-19 safety plan and provide feedback, in alignment with WorkSafeBC protocols. The plan is the foundation of COVID-19 safety in the workplace and, when done right, will enable businesses to effectively manage those busy times such as Lunar New Year, Valentine’s Day and Family Day.”

Dan Baxter, Interim CEO, BC Chamber of Commerce
“The BC Chamber network and the businesses we represent continue to take all necessary precautions and guidance provided by Dr. Bonnie Henry and WorkSafeBC, to ensure a safe long weekend for our province. Our business network understands that while we are flattening the curve, weekends like this are critical to maintaining our high standards of safety for a faster recovery.”

Key Facts

  • As of Jan. 29, 2021, WorkSafeBC has conducted 4,169 consultations with employers related to COVID-19.
  • WorkSafeBC has conducted 22,122 worksite inspections related to COVID-19.
  • A total of 1,667 orders have been issued to employers for COVID-related violations.
  • From Feb. 3-7, WorkSafeBC conducted 230 inspections of bars, pubs and restaurants related to the Super Bowl.
  • On Jan. 30-31, WorkSafeBC conducted 62 inspections of Whistler businesses amid an increase in COVID-19 cases.
  • This month, WorkSafeBC launched an awareness campaign to support workplace health and safety. The province-wide, multi-language campaign focuses on several specific actions workers and employers need to take to keep workplaces safe from COVID-19.

About WorkSafeBC

WorkSafeBC engages workers and employers to prevent injury, disease, and disability in B.C. When work-related injuries or diseases occur, WorkSafeBC provides compensation and support to people in their recovery, rehabilitation, and safe return to work. We serve approximately 2.5 million workers and 249,000 employers across B.C.

For more information, contact:

Media Relations, WorkSafeBC
Tel: 604.276.5157