The companies in New Zealand are preparing to get going again with the ease in lockdown, while many will be able to go back to work.
Ease in Lockdown Alert Level
The New Zealand government has announced the country to remain in Alert Level 4 lockdown till Monday 27 April, post which, the country shall implement and hold on to Alert Level 3 for two weeks. The cabinet is expected to review how the situation is and will make further decisions on 11 May 2020.
Not only businesses but the government also looks forward to reopening schools soon after the country moves into Alert Level 3.
According to the Ministry of Health, New Zealand, the number of confirmed cases in New Zealand on 21 April 2020 at 09:00 AM NZST stood at 1,107, where 1,006 had recovered, and only 13 people had died.
The number of patients that currently are in hospitals is 12. New Zealand is amongst those few countries that have managed to timely curb the spread of COVID-19 and have not experienced much damage to human life. Countries like the US, Spain, Italy, Iran, and the COVID-19’s epicentre China, have suffered brutal setback from the infectious disease.
Are Rich Americans fleeing to NZ to escape COVID-19?
The death toll due to coronavirus in the US has exceeded 42,000. Despite the grave situation, there have been disagreements flagged by people over “stay at home” orders by the government.
Reportedly, a New York-based tech chief in America has been looking to escape from the worrisome situation in the US and have safe shelter in New Zealand at a multimillion-dollar bunker 11 feet underground in the island country. In times when New York has become the new epicentre of COVID-19, New Zealand has been lauded across the globe for its effective response to the virus.
People have been in Alert Level 4 lockdown for around a month now in New Zealand and are yearning to resume life outside their closed doors. With relaxation in lockdown rules announced, you might be thinking to go back to a normal life before the lockdown. No matter how much relieving this may sound, relaxation in lockdown does not merely mean that you lose hold of your grip over controlling the coronavirus outbreak.
Businesses Prepare for Reopening in NZ
As New Zealand plans to enter Alert Level 3 of lockdown on Tuesday 28 April 2020, business owners were seen making preparations for the relaxation in lockdown by registering new online store services, renovating storefronts and developing new methods to retain the customers and keep them engaged so the business can operate safely.
As per media reports, Uber Eats is set to resume its services in New Zealand from Tuesday 28 April 2020, once the relaxation in the alert level for lockdown is introduced. As outlined under the Alert Level 3 guidelines, food delivery can begin through contactless delivery and payments once the alert levels cool down. The food delivery services in New Zealand were in a state of halt for a month since the lockdown was introduced.
Golden Rules for Businesses
Although the lowering of the alert level in the lockdown comes with few relaxations, it may take some time for normalcy to return and businesses to operate in full swing. Let us look at how relaxing will be Level 3 restrictions to the companies. Five Golden Rules for businesses to follow during the Alert Level 3 in New Zealand are:
- Firstly, if a business requires close physical contact with the customers or amongst employees like hairdressing, massage, house cleaning, or door-to-door salespeople, then it shall not be allowed to operate under Level 3 restrictions.
- Secondly, if a business can be carried out by working from remote locations, then it is advisable that work should be carried out from home or remote locations.
- Thirdly, businesses have been advised not to allow customers to enter their premises supermarket, dairy, petrol station, pharmacy or permitted health service in order to avoid making close contact.
- Even the payments shall be carried through contactless mode like online transfers and over the phone or in a contactless way, and delivery or pick-up of the products must also be in a contactless manner.
- Moreover, necessary hygiene measures like physical distancing, hand washing and regular cleaning of the surfaces and sick workers staying at home, etc. along with all other health and safety obligations should be abided by.
Other than this, people should stay within their immediate household bubble, but can expand this to reconnect with close family, or bring in caregivers, or support isolated people and ensure the protection of the bubble once it has been extended.
Students are advised to remain at home and learn via connecting to distance learning. However, parents can be allowed to send their children to school where they need to. For the children who cannot learn through distance learning or whose parents need to return to work, schools shall be a safe place for such children.
Moreover, travelling remains restricted and shall be allowed for permitted movement in the local area like for going to work or school, and shopping. However, public transport shall still be available for travelling to work or school, with a limited capacity and passengers seated two metres away from each other.
Since social gatherings pose a very high risk of transmitting COVID-19, the New Zealand government has sought to limit the acceptable gatherings with up to ten people allowed to gather for funerals and tangihanga and wedding ceremonies, not receptions.
In a nutshell, several movements shall be allowed during the relaxed restrictions, while people who are at risk and are considering leaving their home should seek advice before doing so. Following strict health and safety and physical distancing rules shall be vital in ensuring the smooth and safe functioning of the operations.
Utmost safety and protection need to be provided to avoid any rebound in the coronavirus cases, as has been reported in several parts of the world.