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COVID-19: Prince Edward Island Reopening Frequently Asked Questions

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When is the start of the second phase of reopening the economy in Prince Edward Island?

The provincial government of Prince Edward Island has announced a four-phase reopening plan titled Renew PEI Together. Phase two began on May 22nd, 2020. A potential date has been set for phase three beginning on June 1, 2020. The start date for phase four remains to be determined.

Which sectors in Prince Edward Island are currently allowed to open?

Phase Two of the PEI recovery plan began on May 22nd and includes the following businesses to be permitted to operate while observing their obligations (see section Prince Edward Island COVID-19 Recovery Process: Your obligations as an employer).

  • Retail outlets
  • Landscaping services
  • Construction, maintenance and repair services
  • Golf courses, driving ranges and shooting ranges
  • Cleaning and restoration services
  • Extermination and pest control
  • Select personal services including hairdressers, barbers, and pet grooming
  • Car washes
  • U-pick
  • Greenhouses and nurseries
  • Bottle depots
  • Marinas and yacht clubs
  • Outdoor shooting ranges
  • Watershed clean-up and stream maintenance
  • Pool maintenance and construction
  • Photography services (outdoor only)
  • Unlicensed child care providers and licensed child care centres 
  • Dental care: emergency and urgent treatment in dental offices
  • Non-Urgent Health Professional Services: Audiologists, chiropractors, foot care providers, naturopaths, occupational therapists, optometrists, opticians, physiotherapists, podiatrists, private practice social workers, therapists, counsellors, psychologists, psychotherapists, naturopaths, massage therapists, acupuncturists and acupressurists.

Services already deemed essential are still permitted to directly serve the public. Non-essential businesses not included in phase one may be able to operate while modifying their operations and by observing public health orders.

Businesses who require clarifications on the Prince Edward Island recovery plan can call 1-800-958-6400 or email [email protected].

What do I need to know before I can reopen my business?

As different types of businesses are allowed to reopen in phases, your business must create and implement a COVID-19 Operational plan.

  • The plan must follow the recommendations and requirements of Public Health;
  • The plan must outline how your business will manage the safe opening and operation of your business;
  • A copy of the plan must be present at the workplace and available for review by government officials;
  • The Environmental Health Office can perform both random and complaint-based inspections unannounced after May 1st at your place of business.

To help your business meet its requirements, CFIB has created a template to facilitate the creation of your COVID-19 Operational plan.

Business owners should consult the section “Prince Edward Island COVID-19 Recovery Process: Your obligations as an employer” of the CFIB Prince Edward Island COVID-19 page.

If I am reopening my business, does that mean the threat of COVID-19 is over?

No, in order to reduce exposure, you will need to follow the health and safety guidelines outlined by the province that ensure the safety of your employees and general public that your business comes in contact with.

I am not included in the initial list of businesses that can open during Phase One, when can I open my business?

The PEI government has released Renew PEI, Together. It outlines a four-phase process to reopen PEI with a progressive lifting of public health measures, including those on businesses over three-week periods. If your business was not included during phase-one re-opening you can review the re-opening plan phases to see where your business fits.

The lifting of measures will be re-evaluated based on the latest information from PEI's Chief Public Health Office. Decisions during each phase will be based on public health evidence and continuous monitoring. If there are concerns about moving into a next phase, progress will be slowed, halted or even reversed to continue to protect the health and safety of Islanders.

Services already deemed essential are still permitted to directly serve the public. Non-essential businesses not included in phase one may be able to operate while modifying their operations and by observing public health orders.

    Are there any fines for opening my business, if it is not considered essential or if it has not been reopened by government?

    The PEI government has announced strict fines for anyone not complying with self-isolation requirements. The penalties outlined today for Islanders who do not comply include: 

    • A fine of $1,000 for a first offence;
    • A fine of $2,000 for a second offence; or,
    • A fine of $10,000 and in extreme circumstances.
    What compliance issues and provincial standards do I need to follow as I reopen my business?

    As different types of businesses are allowed to reopen in phases, your business must create and implement a Pandemic Operational plan:

    • The plan must follow the recommendations and requirements of the Public Health Order for COVID-19;
    • The plan must outline how your business will manage the safe opening & operation of business;
    • The plan should be adapted and include sector specific measures put forward by government;
    •  A copy of the plan must be present at the workplace and available for review by government officials. The Environmental Health Office can perform both random and complaint-based inspections unannounced.

    Other Resources

    What are my employees' health and safety rights?

    The Occupational Health and Safety Act requires all employers to take all reasonable precautions to protect the health and safety of workers. An employee has the right to participate by providing feedback to their employer, the right to know hazards that they may be exposed to, and the right to refuse working in an unsafe environment.

    My business can be open, how do I re-call my employees?

    Provide employees with as much notice as you can. You can send a registered letter to your employee letting them know the date of their next shift, hours, along with any relevant information they need such as a contact person they can reach out to, like a supervisor, if they have any questions or concerns.
     

    What if my employees are refusing work due to COVID-19 concerns?

    Employees have the right to refuse working under what they consider an unsafe environment. If this is the case, remind your employees of the preventive measures that have been put in place, and the safety products available to them. Communicate to the employee that their safety is your priority. 

    You may choose to reassign work, perhaps allowing them to work from home. In this case, the employee must receive the same wages and benefits as they would have received under their previous assignment. There is a work refusal process, which may include calling the Workers’ Compensation Board of PEI inspector to ensure safety of employees and confirm if your preventative measures are up to the standards. Please contact us for further details on this topic. To report a work refusal during regular business hours (8:00am-4:30pm, Monday-Friday) please call (902) 368-5680 or email [email protected] .

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