(Last updated 13/05/2022)
The whole of New Zealand moved to the Orange traffic light setting as of 11:59pm on Wednesday the 13th of April.
What this means for your business:
- There are no more capacity limits for indoor or outdoor settings.
- Face masks are still required for staff and customers in many indoor settings.
Vaccination requirements in the workplace
Some vaccine mandates for workers have been removed. Government vaccine mandates will now only apply to workplaces that support vulnerable populations, or who work in high-risk environments where spread would be rapid or exposure to new variants is high. These workplaces will need to continue to require their workers to be vaccinated and boosted.
Businesses are also encouraged to pause any vaccination-related employment processes and review their own COVID-19 work health and safety assessment against the latest public health advice. More information can be found here.
My Vaccine Pass to be voluntary
The Government no longer requires My Vaccine Pass to be used to access businesses, events and services. Businesses can still choose to require My Vaccine Pass as a condition of entry if there are health and safety reasons for doing so.
Some workers are still required to be vaccinated.
Click here for more information.
Where Can I Find Up-to-Date and Accurate COVID-19 Information for Businesses?
https://www.business.govt.nz/covid-19/ The government’s central resource for COVID-19 business information with updates about COVID-19 and guidance to help businesses. Here’s where you’ll find information about:
- COVID-19 Protection Framework
- Omicron: Testing and returning to work
- dealing with Omicron
- requiring My Vaccine Passes for entry
- vaccination assessment tool
- financial support for businesses
- My Vaccine Passes
- face covering requirements for staff and customers
- record keeping and contact tracing
- mental health and wellbeing support.
Please refer to the Ministry of Health for health-related information and covid19.govt.nz for all other information from government.
If you have a question about alert level settings for businesses, and you cannot find the information above, please email AL4BusinessServices@mbie.govt.nz
Close Contact Scheme & Bubble of One Initiative
The Close Contact Exemption scheme will help critical services manage absenteeism and continue operating as Omicron spreads. It will come into effect when the country moves to Phase Two of the Omicron strategy and continue in Phase Three.
For non-critical services at Phase Two, any business or sole trader may have a worker who is a close contact on-site, if the worker is not customer facing and can maintain a ‘bubble of one’ while at work. Click here for more info.
Activate Tāmaki Makaurau website
Activate Tāmaki Makaurau has been set up to connect existing Auckland businesses with that support. It is an opportunity to assist the business community to navigate the current environment and build more resilient businesses by supporting them to work through tough decisions, seize future opportunities and adapt where necessary to enable businesses to thrive.
Visit website here.
What guidance is there for businesses under the COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic lights)?
Please access the link here
This page will include:
- Information about the framework
- Framework settings
- What it means for business
- Checking My Vaccine Pass
- COVID-19 Resource Toolkit
- What to do if you workplace has a case of COVID-19
Managing the impact of COVID-19 cases at your business
Have a plan for COVID-19, particularly the Omicron variant, affecting your workers, suppliers or customers. You want to do everything you can to protect your workplace, workers and community. Click here for more information and resources.
What Financial Support Is Available?
If your income has been affected by COVID-19, you may be able to apply for financial support.
COVID Support Payment (CSP)
A targeted COVID Support Payment has been made available for businesses struggling with revenue during the Omicron outbreak. Three fortnightly COVID-19 Support Payments (CSP) will be available. The CSP is a payment to help support viable and ongoing businesses or organisations which have experienced a 40% or more drop in revenue as a result of one or more of the COVID-19 circumstances. Please note that applications for all 3 CSPs will close on 5 May 2022. Click here for more info.
Who can get the COVID-19 Short-Term Absence Payment?
Businesses, including self-employed people, and their workers need to meet certain criteria to apply for the COVID-19 Short-Term Absence Payment.
Businesses can apply for the Short-Term Absence Payment if they’ve been advised that their worker, or a self-employed person, is:
- staying home while waiting for a COVID-19 test result, in accordance with public health guidance, or are
- the parent or caregiver of a dependant who is staying home while waiting for their COVID-19 test results, in accordance with public health guidance, and the dependant needs support to do so safely, or are
- a household member or secondary contact (as described in public health guidance) of someone who is a close contact of a person with COVID-19, and the worker has been advised to stay at home while waiting for the close contact’s test results.
Are you eligible for the COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme?
If you have been asked by health officials to self-isolate and you cannot work from home, you may be eligible for the COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme. Your employer needs to apply for you. You can also apply if you are self-employed.
Your employer can also get this payment for you if you:
- are sick with COVID-19 and need to isolate until a doctor tells you that you no longer need to
- have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19
- are at a higher risk of getting sick from COVID-19
- live with someone who is at high risk of getting sick from COVID-19, and a doctor or health professional has told people in the household to isolate to reduce the risk of transmitting COVID-19 to vulnerable household members
- have been asked to self-isolate by public health officials
- need to stay home and look after a dependent child who needs support to self-isolate.
Your employer can get $600 per week if you work full time, and $359 per week if you work part time to pass on to you. To be eligible for a one-week payment, you need to be self-isolating for at least four consecutive calendar days.
Talk to your employer if you think you meet the criteria.
There are various COVID-19 financial support schemes available to businesses, depending on your situation. To learn more about each type of support and where you can find more information, go to the https://www.business.govt.nz/covid-19/financial-support-for-businesses/ site.
How can we support the wellbeing of our rangatahi, whanau, friends and colleagues?
Additional funding was announced to further support our young Kiwis in the Youth Mental Wellbeing Fund. Lockdowns are particularly challenging times for young people, so this fund will provide grants of up to $100,000 to organisations and programmes supporting young New Zealanders through COVID.
Help is there for everyone, at any time, no matter where you live or what age you are.
- Call or text 1737, 24 hours a day, seven days a week to speak with a trained counsellor for free
- Young people can also contact Youthline by calling 0800 376 633 or text 234 for free
- Call 0800 559 009 for food support via MSD
- Our Pacific community can receive mental health support on 0800 652 535
- Check out the free mental health and wellbeing resources online at https://covid19.govt.nz/health-and.../mental-wellbeing/
For COVID-19 Health Related Information
For all health-related information refer to the Ministry of Health website https://www.health.govt.nz/ and covid19.govt.nz for the latest updates, information and advice on COVID-19 including:
- COVID-19 contact tracing locations of interest
- Mental wellbeing support
- Vaccines – what you need to know
Free helpline for businesses, offering advice and access to Government business support, HR and general business advice and access to online resources and webinars. Call 0800 500 362 for North Island, or 0800 50 50 96 for South Island.
The GETBA team are here to help. If you have any questions, need help in getting more information or want to talk to us call us on 09 273 6274 or email firstname.lastname@example.org