Private businesses whose sectors of activity are not subject to a restriction due to the alert level of their region may authorize their employees to return to the workplace. However, a maximum occupation rate of 25% is set for businesses whose premises are located in office buildings.
For activities that can continue on a remote basis, telework remains strongly recommended. It is recommended, for example, that all businesses give priority in returning to work for those employees that must provide direct service to clients or whose work duties cannot be done remotely.
Those businesses that wish to have their staff return to the workplace must implement the necessary measures to protect the health and safety of their workers. These measures are set out in the document Hierarchy of Control Measures in the Workplace (PDF, 1,43 Mo) , produced by the Institut national de santé publique du Québec (INSPQ).
In particular, the employer must ensure that a distance of at least two metres is maintained between workers and any other person present at the workplace (clients, suppliers, etc.). When this distance can be maintained, workers must at least wear a face-covering in the lobbies, reception areas and elevators, in compliance with the government Order in Council on face-coverings (PDF 73 Kb).
In the event that this physical distancing cannot be maintained, the employer must apply other measures, for example by installing physical barriers or by providing safety equipment. It should be noted that workers must wear a medical mask rather than a face-covering if they are less than two metres apart.
Investigators from the Commission des normes, de l’équité, de la santé et de la sécurité du travail (CNESST) are visiting various workplaces to ensure compliance with the health rules. The CNESST may also intervene whenever the measures are not being respected in the workplace.
For more information on the measures to be applied in the workplace, please consult les outils en santé et sécurité au travail préparés par la CNESST .
Tools are also available on the website of the INSPQ to facilitate the implementation of the health directives.
Last update: November 6, 2020