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WorkSafeBC to conduct random inspections as economy reopens under COVID-19

Labour minister promises more inspections as B.C. businesses re-open
Labour minister promises more inspections as B.C. businesses re-open

WorkSafeBC staff will conduct random inspections of businesses as the province slowly reopens under the coronavirus pandemic, according to B.C.’s labour minister.

“This is to make sure businesses have the best safety measures in place and consumers can place their trust by stepping inside of them,” Harry Bains said Thursday.

Enhanced COVID-19 enforcement protocols
Enhanced COVID-19 enforcement protocols

Adhering to guidelines set out by WorkSafeBC and the provincial health officer will be a key factor in rebuilding consumer trust, he added.

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“It is up to us and the businesses to ensure that we win the confidence of the public — their patrons, who will be patronizing their businesses.”

READ MORE: Confusion among hairstylists as to how B.C. salons will reopen under COVID-19

Businesses should use provincial guidelines as a jumping-off point to develop their own protocols, Bains said.

WorkSafeBC has previously said that inspectors will focus on education rather than shutting down businesses without a proper COVID-19 plan.

Premier John Horgan said some sectors are still concerned they don’t have the proper guidance on how to operate, and that staff are working with those sectors to develop new measures.

WorkSafeBC issues guidelines as B.C. businesses reopen
WorkSafeBC issues guidelines as B.C. businesses reopen

Bains also said the province will push ahead with the planned minimum wage increase on June 1 to $14.60 per hour from $13.85 an hour.

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He says the lowest paid workers need money in their pockets to help them support their livelihoods and contribute more dollars to local businesses.

— With files from The Canadian Press