Covid19 Complaint

We are pleased to announce that we are Covid19 Complaint and for the information of our clients, we publish it here.

Stay safe!
2020

THE AGENCY COVID 19 INTERNAL AND EXTERNAL


POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ("CPP”)


IN TERMS OF



The Disaster Management Act 57 of 2002 and Regulations


Occupational Health and Safety Act No. 85/1993 with reference to the Hazardous Biological Agents Regulations – 27 Dec 2001


Basic Conditions of Employment Act No. 75 of 1997


1. DEFINITIONS


THE AGENCY means the business registered as a private company Margus Holdings (Pty) Ltd trading as Healing Spaces, Registration No: 2018/591527/07;

DMA means the Disaster Management Act 57 of 2002 and all Regulations and amendments thereto;
CPP means the THE AGENCY”s Internal and External COVID 19 Policies and Procedures;
BCEA means the Basic Conditions of Employment Act No. 75 of 1997 as amended from time to time;
NICD means the National Institute for Communicable Diseases, a division of the National Health Laboratory Services;

Gloves as defined in the NICD recommendations mean "single use or utility gloves”. After use, utility gloves should be washed in hot soapy water and disinfected with 0,5% sodium hypochlorite sodium and single use gloves are to be discarded after every use;

Masks will include cloth masks as required in terms of the South African Department of Health and the obligation for THE AGENCY to provide Respiratory Protective Equipmentto all employees and which masks are to be washed with soap and water after every wear and in terms of which wearers are advised to avoid touching the inside of the mask at all times;

OHS Act means the Occupational Health and Safety Act 85 of 1993 as amended from time to time;
CPA means the Criminal Procedure Act 51 of 1977 with Regulations thereto;

The Regulations mean the Regulations in respect of the OHS Act together with all COVID 19 Regulations which have been promulgated in terms of the Disaster Management Act 57 of 2002;

Employees shall include all persons in the permanent or temporary employ of THE AGENCY at all levels including those persons with short term employment contracts, intern agents and full status agents;

Risk Levels refer to the different risk levels which were introduced by the Government and in terms of which each province and local district will be classified for purposes of determining the rules and regulations which will apply to our business whilst falling within a certain level;

OHS Medical officer/s refers to the appointed person/s in each of the AGENCY branches and offices who will hold certain responsibilities in terms of this CPP;

Hazardous Biological Agent means any micro-organism, cell culture or human endoparasite, including any which have been genetically modified, which may cause an infection, allergy or toxicity, or otherwise create a hazard to human health;

COVID 19 means Coronavirus disease 2019 which leads to illness caused by a novel coronavirus now called severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2; formerly called 2019-nCoV), which was first identified amid an outbreak of respiratory illness cases in Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China;
WHO means the World Health Organisation.

PPE means Personal Protection Equipment;

WORKPLACE means any premises or place where a person performs work;

SANITIZER a hand sanitizer must be one that has at least 70% alcohol content and is in accordance with the recommendations of the Department of Health.

HOTSPOT means a geographical area or cluster of geographical areas which has been identified as being Covid 19 High Risk areas.

PURPOSE OF THIS CPP MANUAL

The purpose of this CPP is to formalize THE AGENCY”s internal and external policies in accordance with the provisions contained in the OHS Act, the Regulations thereto in respect of the Hazardous Biological Agents as well as practical guidance notes in order to ensure that employees and clients’ risk to COVID 19 exposure is minimized and to implement control measures and rules in connection with the AGENCY’S health and safety procedures. A major component of this CPP is THE AGENCY”s obligation to minimize the number of employees at the workplace at any given time through rotation, staggered working hours, shift systems, remote working arrangements or similar measures in order to achieve social distancing and for THE AGENCY to take measures to minimize contact between employees as well as between employees and members of the public.

The procedures set out in this CPP reinforces THE AGENCY’s commitment towards the safety of its employees and clients and occupational hygiene practices and establishes rules which are designed to support the health and safety of all parties in the real estate value chain.

This CPP is binding upon all THE AGENCY’s employees. Any employee who breaches this rule will be guilty of a disciplinary offence and subject to disciplinary action in terms of THE AGENCY’s internal disciplinary rules.
This CPP remains in force for as long as the declaration of a national disaster published in Government Gazette 43096 on 15 March 2020 remains in force.

INTERNAL PERSONAL PROTECTION MEASURES
In terms of the Regulations, every employer, including THE AGENCY, must take measures to-
screen any employee, at the time that they report for work, to ascertain whether they have any of the observable symptoms associated with COVID-19,namely fever, cough, sore throat, redness of eyes or shortness of breath (or difficulty in breathing);

require every employee to report whether they suffer from any of the following additional symptoms: body aches, loss of smell or loss of taste, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea, fatigue, weakness or tiredness; and require employees to immediately inform the employer if they experience any of the symptoms while at work.
THE AGENCY is obliged to comply with any guidelines issued by the National Department of Health in consultation with the Department in respect of symptom screening and if in addition required to do so, medical surveillance and testing.

THE AGENCY is also obliged to establish, as far as is reasonably practicable, what hazards to the health or safety of persons are attached to any work which is performed which includes visits to clients’ places or residence and THE AGENCY shall, as far as is reasonably practicable, further establish what precautionary measures should be taken with respect to such work in order to protect the health and safety of persons, and shall provide the necessary means to apply such precautionary measures.

Desks and workspaces will be separated where necessary in order to ensure that the distance between employees is no less than 1,5 metres and if not practicable to arrange work stations to be spaced at 1,5 metres apart, arrange physical barriers to be placed between work stations or erected on work stations to form a solid physical barrier between employees while they are working;

Desks, workspaces, door handles, doors, walls, telephone handsets, laptops and PC keyboards and screens as well as chairs and chair handles will be disinfected on a regular basis;

Access to the AGENCY offices will be restricted for authorized personnel only and in the event that a client is required to visit the office, the measures contained in CLAUSE 4 hereunder will be observed;

Entry into the offices will be through one point as designated by the Branch Manager of the particular office and staff may enter the offices only after having completed the screening processes as set out herein.
Each of THE AGENCY employees shall be obliged to wear PPE provided by THE AGENCY. This includes wearing:
The compliant mask provided to you by THE AGENCY. You are to dress yourself with your mask prior to arriving at the office. You will be obliged to continue wearing your mask during the course of the day and will be responsible to wash the mask immediately upon arrival at home with soap and water. You are to wear a clean mask every day upon arrival at the office.

The compliant gloves provided to you by THE AGENCY when necessary. You are obliged to disinfect your hands and your gloves appropriately during the day with hand sanitiser or other disinfectant provided by THE AGENCY.

Desks which have been designated will be equipped with a screen compliant with the Regulations and employees are to ensure that, where necessary they remain behind their protective screen;
Each employee will be required to disinfect and sanitize the inside of their motor vehicles diligently prior to arriving at the office;

If it is decided by THE AGENCY that as part of its screening process that it will take the temperatures of its employees, clients and third party contractors, the employees’ temperatures will be taken as they arrive at the office, clients’ temperatures at the onset of the appointment and third party contractors on arrival at the property (only in the event that the agent is present). The results of the examination shall be recorded in the prescribed form hereto attached as ANNEXURE A. Any unusual results shall be referred to Human Resources and the branch manager immediately and steps will be taken in respect of the affected individual;
Each employee is obliged to wash his/her hands regularly in accordance with the guidelines given by the NICD;
Each employee will be obliged to complete and sign a QUESTIONNAIRE once a week on the first day that week on which the employee is in at the office in which each employee will be obliged to supply the required information as honestly and diligently as possible. The OHS Medical Officers at the various offices will ensure that these QUESTIONNAIRES are sent to the relevant staff members and shall keep record of these. This QUESTIONNAIRE is attached hereto and marked ANNEXURE B;

Employees will be prohibited from gathering unnecessarily before office hours , lunch time and after hours;
Employees are encouraged to refrain from unnecessary outings during office hours. If it is necessary for an employee to travel outside of the office during office hours in order to meet with a client or view a property, the employee shall attend to the washing of his/her hands, dressing himself/herself with their gloves and will also be obliged to disinfect his/her hands.

If any of the staff or employees feel sick or have symptoms associated with the COVID 19, they must immediately notify their OHS Medical Officer and Human Resources in order to get guidance on how to proceed.

If an employee presents with any of the symptoms mentioned in clause 3.1 above, or advises THE AGENCY of these symptoms, THE AGENCY must –
not permit the employee to enter the workplace or report for work; or
if the employee is already at work, immediately-

isolate the employee, provide the employee with a surgical mask and arrange for the employee to be transported in a manner that does not place other employees or members of the public at risk either to be self-isolated or for a medical examination or testing; and

assess the risk of transmission, disinfect the area and the employee’s workstation, refer those employees who may be at risk for screening and take any other appropriate measure to prevent possible transmission.
ensure that the employee is tested or referred to an identified testing site.

ensure that the employee is not discriminated against on grounds of having tested positive for COVID-19 in terms of section 6 of the Employment Equity Act, 1998 (Act No. 55 of 1998);

if there is evidence that the worker contracted COVID-19 as a result of
occupational exposure, lodge a claim for compensation in terms of the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act, 1993 (Act No. 130 of 1993) in accordance with Notice 193 published on 3 March 2020.

All employees will be required to keep with them the various Covid 19 Permits required.

EXTERNAL PERSONAL PROTECTION MEASURES
It is crucial that additional measures are implemented when clients attend our offices:

Each client will be obliged to complete a CLIENT QUESTIONNIARE prior to or during the meeting and attached hereto as ANNEXURE C. It will be the responsibility of the particular AGENCY employee who has made the client appointment to send a copy of the QUESTIONNAIRE to the client for completion and signature;
Where possible, it is advisable to obtain the QUESTIONNAIRE prior to the meeting and to ask the client to sign the QUESTIONNAIRE.

If an employee travel to the client’s property for a viewing, then it is advisable that all occupants of the property complete a QUESTIONNAIRE as it may be necessary to do an assessment of any person to whom the employee may be exposed;

The information contained in the QUESTIONNAIRE may be required to assess the risk associated with the particular client:

Whether the client has had contact with anyone suspected of contracting COVID 19 within the last 30 days prior to the date of the appointment;

Whether the client has been suspected of contracting COVID 19 in the last 60 days prior to the date of the appointment;

Whether the client has had a fever within 14 days prior to the appointment;

Whether the client renders services in the essential services sectors and as a result, may have an increased risk of COVID 19 contraction;

Whether the client has travelled inter provincially in the last 60 days prior to the appointment;
Whether the client has travelled internationally in the last 60 days prior to the appointment.
Each client QUESTIONNAIRE is to be given to the designated OHS Medical Officer;

The branch OHS Medical Officer will be obliged to notify THE AGENCY manager in the event that an increased risk exists in respect of dealings with the client;

Each client, upon arrival at the reception area of the office, shall be obliged to undergo a temperature examination. This shall be conducted by the relevant designated person at the branch office and the results hereof shall be recorded. Any unusual results shall be communicated with the branch OHS Medical Officer who will make the necessary referral to Human Resources where required;

Each client will, upon arrival be obliged to dress themselves with a mask and a pair of gloves;
Each client will be obliged to disinfect or sanitize their hands with the sanitizer or disinfectant supplied by THE AGENCY;

Each work space or area, which are exposed to the client will be disinfected after the client visit where practical. This includes: the desk surface, the door handle, the pen and/or other stationery which came in contact with the client;

Protective screens will be installed where necessary and kept sanitised;

It is advisable for employees to try and avoid visiting their client’s properties to avoid the risk of exposure, but in the exceptional instances where this is unavoidable, the AGENCY employee is to take every precaution to minimize the contact he/she has with the client during the visit and shall be obliged to wear the protective mask and gloves during these meetings. The AGENCY employee shall be obliged to properly sanitize his/her hands when returning to the office;

Extra precautions should be taken by THE AGENCY employees who may be required to attend the various Government offices which form part of the business and in addition to the strict measures which will need to be observed inside the Government office and which will be required in terms of such Government office’s own internal processes, each THE AGENCY employee is obliged to disinfect their hands and their pair of gloves upon return to the AGENCY office;

Clients are not to be greeted by the hand;

All work surfaces are to be sanitized regularly during the course of the day. This will be the responsibility of the persons designated for this function in each branch and which shall be clearly communicated to the individuals;
It is suggested that documents are discussed with clients via a video call prior to the appointment with such client in order to minimise the time spent by the client at our office;

Touching clients’ identification documents is to be avoided as much as possible and if unavoidable, additional precautions will be taken by the staff member;
All efforts should be made in order to avoid touch
ing the same documents or stationery used by the client. In the event that this is inevitable, care should be taken to disinfect the file/pages and/or the stationery.

PROPERTY VIEWINGS
If possible, showhouses should be avoided unless absolutely necessary;
THE AGENCY is to arrange private viewings by appointment only and must ensure that the client QUESTIONNAIRE attached hereto is completed by all occupants of the property before the viewing as well as the prospective client interested in the property. Pre-registration of all private viewing attendees should be recorded including names, ID’s, addresses and phone numbers, to assist with contact tracing and a register should be kept for every property and exposure which may have taken place during the private viewings;
Where possible, THE AGENCY employee should send as much information to the prospective client interested in the property prior to the appointment in order to avoid a long protracted visit at the property. In this regard, virtual tours and photographs should be shared before the appointment;

THE AGENCY employee will be obliged to email a full list of all Covid 19 information to both the property owners and/or occupants but also the prospective client who may be interested in the property and this should include instructions that the private viewing is ‘contactless’ and surfaces cannot be touched by attendees;
THE AGENCY employee is to ensure that viewings should be limited to no more than two visitors at any one viewing and should potential clients refuse to adhere to any of the viewing protocols then no admission to the property must be allowed;

THE AGENCY employee will wear gloves throughout the course of the viewing/appointment at the property and will be responsible to open any doors, touch any handles, check switches, flush any toilets, touch any taps on behalf of the attendees;

THE AGENCY employee will ensure that viewings are to be spaced sufficiently apart to allow time for sanitizing after each viewing, as required, and to ensure there is no contact between attendees;

It is encouraged that the owner or occupants of a property not be present during the prospective client viewing but if they are present, then an attempt should be made to ensure that the persons in the property all apply strict social distancing from each other;

It is also encouraged that only one AGENCY employee attend at the property to facilitate a viewing as far as possible.

THIRD PARTY CONTACT
It is inevitable that third parties will have contact and exposure to THE AGENCY’s employees and clients from time to time. It may be necessary for Electrical, Beetle, or Plumbing contractors to access the property in order to perform inspections. It may also be necessary to allow the bank’s valuers to visit the property if a transaction is concluded subject to a bond approval. In certain instances, Architects and Surveyors may be required to visit the property.

In these situations it will be important to request that the owner or tenant in occupation of the property sanitizes the property prior to the visit;

Any third party will be required to complete the QUESTIONNAIRE attached hereto marked ANNEXURE D prior to the appointment and THE AGENCY employee responsible for arranging the third party visit will be obliged to get this completed and signed prior to or at the visit. These QUESTIONNAIRES must be filed by THE AGENCY employee together with the daily registers;

All parties involved in the inspection must adhere to the COVID-19 rules for health and safety as set out herein and that will include the wearing of masks, the sanitization of the hands and surfaces as well as keeping the required distances from each other and the occupants of the property;

If a property is situated within a complex, Body corporate or Home Owners Association must be informed of the inspection and the rules of the complex must be adhered to by all parties involved in the inspection.

CLIENT AND EMPLOYEE QUESTIONNAIRES
Since the risk of contagion in respect of COVID 19 is high, the client, employee and third party QUESTIONNAIRES are a vital part of THE AGENCY’s measures to mitigate the risk of the disease;
The employee QUESTIONNAIRES will be filed in your employee file with Human Resources and will be completed and signed every week;

The client and third party QUESTIONNAIRES will be filed in the client file and where necessary, will be filed by the branch’s OHS Medical Officer for future reference.

REPORTING OBLIGATIONS
Each employee is obliged to apply vigilance whilst at the office and when visiting clients’ properties and must report any suspicious health concerns regarding themselves, their colleagues or their clients to the branch OHS Medical Officer immediately;

The branch OHS Medical Officer, in turn is obliged to report any information which may be relevant to the risk assessment to the branch manager or principal where the risk exists internally;

If an employee has been diagnosed with COVID 19, THE AGENCY will be obliged to:
inform the Department of Health5 and the Department of Employment and Labour;
 
and
investigate the cause including any control failure and review its risk assessment to ensure that the necessary controls and PPE requirements are in place; and

it must give administrative support to any contact-tracing measures implemented by the Department of Health.

STAFF: TRAINING AND RESPONSIBILITY
All employees of THE AGENCY, whether permanent, part-time employees or contractors, will receive training regarding their obligations contained in this CPP;

Each department within the various AGENCY branches will be guided by the Branch Manager of the particular branch in respect of the need to attend at the office and in making these decisions, the THE AGENCY Branch Managers will ensure that the principle of social distancing is observed as recommended by our Government’s Department of Health;

For the employees who are tasked to conduct their required employment operations from home, the need to ensure that you are set up properly and in accordance with THE AGENCY’s operational requirements is paramount and access to your cellphone and PC/laptop will be required. The IT department will assist where required;

All employees must be made aware of the offences detailed in the applicable legislation and the penalties attached thereto. Honesty in completion of the QUESTIONNAIRE is of utmost importance;

Any employee who has been found to have deliberately acted against the provisions of this policy will be subject to the internal disciplinary procedures of THE AGENCY as well as the potential penalties as detailed in the OHS Act and/or the CPA;

A Department of Health inspector designated in terms of section 28 of OHS Act may perform any of the functions in section 29 of OHSA and exercise any of the powers listed in section 30 of OHS Act in order to monitor compliance with the directives and guidelines set out in the Regulations;

In so far as any contravention of the guidelines constitutes a contravention of an obligation or prohibition under OHS Act, the offences and penalties provided for in section 38 of OHS Act apply;

Each person who is found guilty of an offence in terms of the legislation herein mentioned, may be liable to a fine of R50,000.00 or a maximum of no more than 6 months imprisonment or to both such fine and imprisonment and THE AGENCY’s directors may, if found liable be subject to criminal charges

POLICY AMENDMENTS AND DISTRIBUTION
This policy may be updated from time to time in line with changes to legislation or to improve the internal and external processes of THE AGENCY. In the case of updates or amendments, the updated version of the CPP will be made available to staff, either through internal communications or on THE AGENCY’s website.

RECORD KEEPING AND DOCUMENTATION RETENTION
THE AGENCY will retain all client QUESTIONNAIRES and other relevant information and the relevant Annexures in paper record format, or electronically;

Should THE AGENCY receive a court order requiring documents or other information for the use of law enforcement agencies, THE AGENCY shall co-operate and assist EXCO in complying with the court order;
Documents will be kept on file for the required 40 years

BRANCH OHS MEDICAL OFFICERS
Each branch or office will appoint at least one OHS Medical Officer as soon as possible but prior to the branch opening for operations and shall notify the staff members in that branch of the Medical Officer/s’ details;
Each OHS Medical Officer shall receive training in respect of the thermometer which is required in the fulfilling of functions of checking temperatures of employees and clients as set out herein;
Each OHS Medical Officer shall receive training as and when required in order to fulfil his/her functions;
Each branch OHS Medical Officer shall be responsible to observe the fulfillment of all measures herein set out in their particular branches and shall ensure compliance with especially the internal and client PPE measures applicable.

IMPLEMENTATION OF THIS CPP
All permanent and temporary staff members are to be made aware of the existence of this CPP prior to the offices opening for operations and each staff member shall receive either a hard copy or a digital copy thereof.
Each staff member must sign the declaration contained in ANNEXURE B confirming that they have read the CPP and furnishing THE AGENCY with an undertaking to enforce its terms when dealing with all clients.
APPROVAL OF CCP BY THE EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE

This CPP and all amendments thereto shall be approved by the board of directors or owners of THE AGENCY.


WHAT IS THE PROCEDURE IF THERE HAS BEEN EXPOSURE TO COVID 19 OR SYMPTOMS SHOWN
Scenario 1: Employees who have had a high-risk of exposure to a confirmed case of Covid-19 in the workplace or at a client’s property viewing

High-risk means that the employee was within one metre of a confirmed case of Covid for more than 15 minutes without personal protective equipment (PPE) and came into direct contact with droplets from the Covid-19 patient’s nose or mouth. The THE AGENCY manager must first assess and confirm the exposure to the virus.

If the exposure is confirmed, the NICD must be notified. The head of department must approve that the employee self-isolate for at least 7 days.

The employee should also perform daily self-checks for symptoms and complete the symptom monitoring sheet for 14 days after the exposure. If the employee is asymptomatic for 7 days after the exposure, the employer may consider that they return to work following a negative result of a real-time Covid-19 test (RT-PCR) on day eight.

Scenario 2: Employees who have had a low-risk of exposure to a confirmed case of Covid-19 in the workplace or at a client’s property viewing

Low risk means that the employee was more than one metre away from a confirmed case of Covid-19 for less than 15 minutes or within one metre of a confirmed case of Covid-19 but they were wearing PPE to cover their mouth, nose and/or eyes.

The AGENCY manager must still assess and confirm the exposure, however, the employee may continue to work while self-monitoring for 14 days. Self-monitoring must include temperature checks twice daily and a daily symptom check.

THE AGENCY may have to consider the following measures in respect of employees returning to work after isolation:

Undergoing a medical examination to confirm that they are fit to work;

Adhere to social distancing measures, hand and respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette; and
Continue to self-monitor symptoms and seek medical re-evaluation if symptoms recur.
Scenario 3: Employee has current flu-like symptoms

The employee should be assessed by a health professional.

If the employee presents symptoms of an acute respiratory infection, they should be tested for Covid-19. If the test comes back negative, normal sick leave procedures must be followed.

If the test comes back positive, the scenario 4 must be followed.

Scenario 4: Employee tests positive for Covid-19

The employee must be placed on sick leave where possible and must self-isolate at home. If no sick leave is available, then THE AGENCY will discuss the options available with the employee.

THE AGENCY will be obliged to notify the NICD and the Department of Employment and Labour.

Employees can only return 14 days after the onset of symptoms or 14 days after clinical stability, in severe cases.

HOTSPOT CLASSIFICATION
Certain HIGH RISK geographical areas or cluster of geographical areas have been identified and it may be necessary for such areas to be ring fenced with special restrictions and may even move to a different Alert Level than the rest of the country;

In terms of Alert Level 3 rules, AGENCY employees may travel freely to perform their professional duties without the need to produce a permit as long as they do not travel across provinces, metropolitan areas, districts and hotspots;

In the event that travel across these areas mentioned in 16.2. are required for the performance of the employee’s professional duties, a permit issued by THE AGENCY management must be issued in the form contained in ANNEXURE E attached. This permit may not be used for any other purpose but for the travel across the areas herein specified for professional purposes.
 
The Cape Town Property Team