Ipswich City Council is working closely with local health authorities and Queensland Health as the COVID-19 environment continues to evolve at a rapid pace.
Interim Administrator Steve Greenwood said officials have been providing up-to-date information to council about the impacts of COVID-19 and how it will likely impact the community, including council employees.
“Council is following Queensland Health advice and encouraging any employees who feel unwell to stay home, which includes working from home where that is appropriate,” he said.
Mr Greenwood said council has already set up a specialised working group focusing on:
- Safety and health of all employees;
- Business continuity and how council continues to deliver essential services to the community;
- Keeping the community informed of updates;
- How to manage council-owned and managed events; and
- Ways council can assist the community if COVID-19 escalates.
Mr Greenwood said council is focused on maintaining essential services.
“Ipswich residents can still email, call, walk into a Customer Service Centre, or use the Ipswich City Council website for information or to request services,” he said.
“In line with announcements made by the Australian Government over the weekend, non-essential council-run events where more than 500 people are expected to attend have been postponed or cancelled.
“We expect more information to come from Queensland Health and we’ll be putting the people of Ipswich at the forefront of any decisions we make in relation to council operations as we progress.”
Mr Greenwood said could council management strongly supports a safe and healthy workplace, including the possibility of working from home where appropriate.
“In line with the announcement by the Australian Government over the weekend, any employees of council who return from overseas travel will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. Employees have also been advised that if they are unwell, they should stay home, including working from home where that is appropriate,” he said.
“Council is being proactive about supporting our people – those who are well or unwell.
“As an organisation of more than 1200 people in a region like Ipswich, it is not unreasonable to expect some council employees have undergone testing for COVID-19.
“We have a specialist working group closely monitoring the health and safety of our people and supporting those who, for one reason or another, are being tested for COVID-19.
“There are currently no positive confirmed cases of COVID-19 among Ipswich City Council employees.”
He said it is important that the people of Ipswich keep themselves up-to-date via Queensland Health information as the lead agency at: https://www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19