Since January 2020, Staples has been closely monitory COVID-19 and putting various measures in place as recommended by the Canadian Provincial/Federal Government, World Health Organization and Public Health Agencies. In some cases, to ensure the Health and Safety of our associates and customer, we have implemented measures that go beyond minimum recommendations. As the Working and Learning company, we are here to support the communities we are in while maintaining a healthy environment for our customers to shop safe and our associates to work safe.
Our Safe Operating Plan during COVID-19 is as follows:
An Emergency Planning Steering Committee was established in January 2020. This committee continues to meet frequently throughout the week to review the ongoing situation, monitor compliance with this plan and make recommendations to Staples’ Senior leadership team regarding management of COVID-19 and safety considerations and implementation of necessary protocols.
Staples’ continues to communicate regularly with our associates through our internal intranet site where a dedicated COVID-19 section has been established. Communications are also sent regularly through our associate communication app. Our management team at each location also ensures pertinent information is being posted on the location Health and Safety board.
Protocols to reduce risk
We have involved our front-line workers, managers and Joint Health and Safety Committee (JHSC) members to identify areas where there may be risks and have developed detailed protocols to reduce and mitigate possible risks. These include, but are not limited to:
Personal Health Assessments
Associates are required to conduct self-assessments before entering the workplace. Associates and Customers who have recently travelled outside the country or who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms are asked to stay home for everyone’s safety.
All-Day Disinfection with Clean Hands and A Clear Mind
Staples has implemented a rigorous cleaning regimen, pursuant to a detailed cleaning protocol that outlines cleaning and disinfection requirements. Guidelines include disinfection of high touch areas such as demo units, carts, baskets, pin pads and touch pads after each use. Additional measures include:
- Sanitation of stations throughout our stores to reinforce and promote a germ-free environment.
- Hand Washing posters providing guidance on how to practice hand hygiene are placed in restrooms.
- For our associates, a Flu Prevention poster specific to COVID-19 is posted internally on the Health and Safety Board.
Occupational Hygiene is the discipline of anticipating, recognizing, evaluating and controlling health hazards in the working environment with the objective of protecting worker health and well-being and safeguarding the community at large.
- Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), Masks and Gloves are available for associates to use and a guide on how to safely wear and remove has been provided to all associates.
- For our associates, a detailed Hygiene protocol has been established and is regularly reviewed and updated. This protocol outlines Health and Safety controls on how to reduce risk in different areas throughout our locations
To enable social/physical distancing requirements, we are limiting the number of customers in store to ensure a minimum of 2m distance between people wherever possible and have implemented reduced store hours. Additional physical distancing measures include but are not limited to:
- Signage as reminders to maintain social/physical distancing for both customers and associates.
- Plexiglass barriers at cash desk and solution shop
- Distancing markers on the floor
- Contactless curbside pickup is available in the majority of our retail locations
- Customers can also order online at staples.ca with free shipping
Business Travel, Contractors and In-store events
To limit the risk of exposure for our customers and associates, the following have been implemented:
- A ban on business travel by air. The ban will be reviewed as advice from Canadian government travel advisories are updated.
- Only essential contractors are permitted to visit our locations.
- In-store community events and recycling programs have been placed on temporary hold.
In partnership with our internal Learning and Development team, all our associates are required to complete specific safety training related to COVID-19 protocols and safety measures. Training includes information on how to practice hand and respiratory hygiene, occupational hygiene protocols, physical distancing requirements cleaning protocols, and how to safely wear and remove PPE.
The well being of our associates and customers is top priority as we continue to navigate through the complex and challenging situation around COVID-19. Staples’ Safe Operating Plan will be reviewed and updated on an ongoing basis.
Updated May 17, 2020