Covid-19 advice

Coronavirus has had a significant impact on businesses – it’s affecting operations, supply chains, customer engagement and service. We are here to do all we can to help and support you in this difficult period. Over the coming weeks we’ll continue to pass on information that we think will help you, so please keep visiting this page for what we anticipate will be daily updates.

Dear Member,

I hope you, your families, and employees are safe and well. I wanted to write to let you know what action the Scaffolding Association is taking to support you through these challenging times:

  • We are feeding information into Government through the SEC Group, where appropriate, about the issues arising within our sector
  • We are regularly providing you with updated information to help you continue operating your business
  • We are working with our industry partners to ensure that you have access to specialised services and support
  • We are sharing best practice and learning points from across the whole of the industry
  • We will remain able to take your phone calls and respond to emails, but please remain patient as many of our team are working remotely
  • We will continue to work on our key objectives, ensuring that when we emerge the other side of the outbreak you are able to resume work as quickly as possible

Coronavirus has had a significant impact on businesses – it’s affecting operations, supply chains, customer engagement, and service. Please do keep in contact with us and provide us with your experiences and insight so that we can ensure that we are supporting you effectively.

We are here to do all we can to help and support you in this difficult period, so please do not hesitate to get in touch at any time.

Kind regards,

Robert Candy, Chief Executive

Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Hubs

England’s 38 Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Growth Hubs are available to provide practical support and guidance to local employers and businesses across the country facing the challenges caused by the economic impact of coronavirus. Connect with your local hub here.

Data protection and coronavirus: what you need to know

The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) have stated that data protection will not stop you sharing information quickly or adapting how you work. Read their guidance here.

Daily webinars

The CBI are delivering daily webinars (presentations via live video) to keep both members and the wider UK abreast of the latest updates and the impact of the virus on key topics and sectors. Sign up to be involved here. Visit the webinars already broadcast via these links:

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Access to finance

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Mental health

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Supporting SMEs impacted by coronavirus

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Should business be open or not?

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Job Retention Scheme

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Cyber security

CBI Daily Coronavirus Webinar – Sick pay and benefits

Skills and Training Fund

CITB has refreshed the Skills and Training Fund to support firms hit by COVID-19. See the full details here.

Response plan

Read the CITB coronavirus response plan from CEO Sarah Beale here.

Communication updates

CITB will support construction employers throughout the coronavirus crisis and beyond – read their communication updates page.

Apprenticeship attendance grants

CITB are making advanced payment of apprenticeship attendance grants of up to £2,500 for second and third year apprentices. These will be available from 6th April 2020 for those already subject to CITB grant support. Application is simple – complete this brief form.

Help with apprentices

CITB urges all employers not to dismiss any apprentices without first contacting the Apprenticeship Team for advice: Apprenticeships.COVID19@citb.co.uk

Levy bills

CITB have announced that they are suspending the issue of levy bills, initially for three months. Payment will now be sought in August, or possibly later. Read more here.

New advice on coronavirus employment schemes (April 1st update)

Read the Construction Leadership Council’s updated advice.

Advice on temporary suspension of sites

Find out more about temporary suspensions here.

Site operating procedures during COVID-19 (April 2nd update)

The Construction Leadership Council has further revised guidance to sites operating during the pandemic so that managers can ensure they are protecting their workforce and minimising the risk of spread of infection, in line with the government’s social distancing recommendations. Read the guidelines here.

Employee rights

For advice around the rights employees have when it comes to sick leave and how employers should handle staff members affected by the virus visit the ACAS site.

FAQs for Employers

Citation’s experts have gathered some FAQs around health and safety, HR and Employment Law, and practical steps for employers – read them here. If you need to speak to someone call 0345 844 1111. Remember to mention your Scaffolding Association membership when calling.

Support for the self-employed

Indigo Group have published information regarding support for the self-employed on their website.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Businesses can now access government support to keep operating. The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme will provide government-backed loans of up to £5million to small and medium businesses. Find out more here.

Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme

Businesses can now access government support to keep operating. The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme will provide government-backed loans of up to £5million to small and medium businesses. Find out more here.

Business support

There is now a comprehensive action plan in place offering support for business. Visit the government website here for full details.

A letter of thanks for the construction sector

Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Alok Sharma, has written a letter of thanks all those who are working tirelessly within the construction industry during the pandemic.

Government plan of action

The government have created a document that sets out what the UK as a whole has done, and plans to do, to tackle the coronavirus outbreak – view it here.

Daily government updates

You can discover the number of cases and risk level in the UK, what to do if you have symptoms, and what the government is doing about the virus by visiting this site.

Site operating procedures

The Construction Leadership Council has issued revised guidance to sites operating during the pandemic so that managers can ensure they are protecting their workforce and minimising the risk of spread of infection, in line with the government’s social distancing recommendations. Read the guidelines here.

Respirator guidance

Tight-fitting respirators (such as disposable FFP3 masks and reusable half masks) rely on having a good seal with the wearer’s face. A face fit test should be carried out to ensure the respiratory protective equipment (RPE) can protect the wearer. Read guidance from the Health and Safety Executive here.

Simple steps to help protect the health and safety of staff:

  • Keep everyone updated on actions being taken to reduce risks of exposure in the workplace
  • Ensure everyone’s contact numbers and emergency contact details are up to date
  • Ensure managers know how to spot symptoms of coronavirus and are clear on the actions they need to take
  • Ensure operatives are wearing gloves when handling materials and equipment
  • Ensure there are places to wash hands with hot water and soap
  • Encourage everyone to wash their hands regularly
  • Schedule welfare breaks to reduce the number of people congregating in canteens and breakout areas
  • Avoid using shared pens when signing in and out of site
  • Wash or sanitise hands after using biometric sign-ins
  • Provide hand sanitiser and tissues

Questions about insurance

With coronavirus causing global concern, the Association of British Insurers have produced a guide to some of the most commonly asked questions regarding insurance at this time. View their article here.

An outline of legal issues

With the list of everyday activities on ‘lock down’ due to the pandemic growing by the day, the progress on construction projects will be disrupted. Read this article from our construction law partners at Birketts LLP.

NHS every mind matters

10 tips to help you take care of your mental health and wellbeing during this time of uncertainty.

Mind

Coronavirus and your wellbeing – information to help you cope with anxiety.

Mental Health Foundation

Look after your mental health during the coronavirus outbreak – this article may help.

Mates In Mind

Employers and employees alike should find benefit in the Managing Mental Health Guide for organisations, which provides a remote working checklist, homeworking mental health tips, access to a community hub and online training.

Construction Industry Scaffolders Record Scheme

Read the Construction Industry Scaffolders Record Scheme update here.

Education and Skills Funding Agency

Government have issued guidance for apprentices, employers, training providers and assessment organisations, outlining the changes that the Education and Skills Funding Agency (ESFA) is making to the apprenticeship programme during the pandemic. View it here.

The Construction Industry Coronavirus (CICV) Forum

A collective of trade and professional bodies gathering intelligence, sharing advice and speaking directly with government on issues affecting members in the current crisis.

The forum members have produced guidance to offer some form of clarity to the industry as we all work in the most unusual of times.

Every business must make their own judgements on the work they will do, but they should understand the advice which the Scottish Government has issued over the steps to be taken to minimise the spread of Coronavirus.

The advice is subject to change without notice depending on decisions taken by the Scottish or UK Governments and updated information will be issued as required.

Download the guidance here