All sectors of the construction industry are active in all regions of Québec.
To ensure safety on construction sites, specific directives and requirements must be heeded and preventive measures rigorously applied. In this particular context, the general population, workers and contractors have a role to play to safeguard the health, safety and well-being of everyone.
Sectors in which activities are allowed to restart
All sectors of the construction industry throughout all regions of Québec are authorized to resume their activities:
- Residential sector
- Civil engineering and road works sector
- Institutional and commercial sector
- Industrial sector
Preventive measures on construction sites
Employers’ responsibilities in matters of health
As an employer in the construction sector or the principal contractor of a construction site, you are responsible for the workers’ health, safety and physical integrity. The Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST) has designed tools to help you put the measures adopted in place.
- COVID-19 Guide – Construction Sites
Strict measures need to be taken in order for a construction site to continue its activities. These measures are presented in detail in the COVID-19 Guide – Construction Sites . Be sure to read it!
- Daily checklist – COVID-19
Before you start your workday, it is important to go through this checklist . Doing so enables you to ensure compliance with the measures in place. This checklist must be posted and available on job-sites.
- Poster of preventive measures for workers’ health
This poster presents the main preventive measures to put in place for workers’ health . Remember to print it and post it!
Workers’ responsibilities in matters of health
As a construction worker, you also have a role to play in protecting yourself and others. Make sure that you follow all the basic rules regarding physical distancing and hygiene on and near all job-sites.
- Keep a distance of 2 metres from your colleagues at all times.
- Use technology that enables you to limit physical contact.
- Avoid direct contact when greeting by using contactless practices.
- Wash your hands often and for at least 20 seconds.
- Cough or sneeze into your elbow.
- Dispose of your tissues as soon as you’ve used them.
- Avoid sharing tools, but if you have to share, disinfect the tools after each use.
Reporting a non-compliant situation
In matters of health
Do you feel that your work presents a risk to your health or your safety? Are the health measures adopted not being respected at your job-site?
Call 1 844 838-0808 to speak with a CNESST inspector.
Job-sites subject to Act R-20
If you witness a non-compliant situation on a job-site subject to Act R-20 , report the situation to the Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ) .
Site visits and inspections
Representatives of Garantie construction résidentielle (GCR) conduct quick visits (French only) of job-sites in order to
- check to ensure that the materials used are in the condition required to guarantee the building’s longevity and the safety of its future occupants
- protect future buyers of the building
- guide contractors and answer their questions
GCR is now back to carrying out its regular inspection activities in Québec.
In order to respect all of the safety instructions, the following measures have been adopted:
- Mandatory face covering (mask and glasses or visor)
- Frequent hand-washing
- Physical distancing
- Preliminary questionnaire
- Respect of a refusal to undergo inspection when risk is high (too many employees present, potential of contamination, etc.)
CNESST inspectors, whose role is to ensure compliance with the Act respecting occupational health and safety, can intervene in the case of
- a complaint
- a right to refuse to work
- a serious work accident
CCQ inspectors are authorized to verify certain measures presented in the COVID-19 Guide – Construction Sites and report situations to the CNESST. In short, the CCQ is authorized to verify that
- workers have access to
- a toilet
- water for hand washing as well as soap or an alcohol-based (60% or more) gel
- on all construction sites with 25 workers and more, workers have access to
- flushing toilets
- a sink with running water near each flush toilet
- a hand dryer, a paper towel (folded or roll) dispenser
- a wastebasket for used paper towel disposal (as applicable)
- a sign indicating water that is not potable, where applicable
Maintenance of requirements in respect of contractors and workers
In spite of the current pandemic, the requirements that applied to working in construction prior to the pandemic continue to apply.
These requirements are
- Hold a valid contractor’s licence issued by the Régie du bâtiment du Québec (RBQ) authorizing the worker to perform construction work
- Hold a competency certificate to work on job-sites subject to Act R-20
- Be accredited by GCR to build a detached, semi-detached or row-type single-family dwelling, a multiplex or condominium building with no more than 4 units stacked one above the other. This requirement is set out in the Regulation respecting the guarantee plan for new residential buildings.
- Fulfill the responsibilities and obligations set by the CCQ if you are an employer working on job-sites subject to Act R-20
- Fulfill the collective agreements negotiated between unions and employers. This requirement continues to apply where the return to work at job-sites subject to Act R-20 results in a reorganization of work on a number of levels: adaptation of work methods and schedules, flexible work hours, etc.
Additional Information and Resources
Régie du bâtiment du Québec (RBQ)
Consult the COVID-19: Des réponses à vos questions page (in French only) of the RBQ for any questions on the following subjects:
- Examinations : cancellation and deferral
- Licence : current application to amend a licence, payment of licence maintenance fees, notice of assessment received, departure of a guarantor
Garantie de construction résidentielle (GCR)
If you have questions regarding your accreditation by GCR, building registration or any other subjects, consult its frequently asked questions page (in French only). You can also contact GCR by email at email@example.com, or by telephone at 1 855 657-2333.
Commission de la construction du Québec (CCQ)
For any questions concerning employee benefits, qualification, access to the construction industry, the application of Act R-20, training and development activities in the context of a pandemic, consult the COVID-19: Questions and Answers page of the CCQ website.
Updated information on the following subjects:
- Social benefits
- Qualification and access to the industry
- Application of Act R-20
- Training and upgrading
Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST)
For any questions regarding occupational standards, health, safety or equity in the context of COVID-19, consult the Questions and answers page of the CNESST website.
Answers to questions about Reopening of construction during the COVID-19 pandemic
Last update: January 29, 2021