Why are we still working?
At Grow Tree Care, we care deeply for our employees and our community. We are a small family run business and our team members have families and rent/mortgages to pay. We are concerned about supporting them and keeping them working as long as we can to avoid financial hardship.
We work in small crews outdoors which is the ideal place to work in the present situation. We are fortunate in this regard and therefore, we are doing our best to delay the inevitable strain on the EI system when, as seems likely, all non-essential businesses are closed. We acknowledge that not everyone has that privilege.
In short, because we can continue to work at the moment, we are. It is our way of pitching in and trying to lessen the anxiety of the moment.
How are we protecting our employees and our community?
We are carefully monitoring the situation on a daily basis, keeping abreast of all Government of BC and Federal announcements, communicating with our employees, and adjusting as needed to changing circumstances.
As of Monday, March 23, 2020, the Province of BC has not yet closed all non-essential businesses. Guidelines have been posted on WorkSafeBC site and we are following those guidelines.
We have also taken inspiration from the guidelines for construction sites though they do not strictly apply to arboriculture as we work in considerably smaller crews in more open spaces.
- employees are travelling in separate vehicles to job sites
- clients are being asked to stay in their homes; we phone to let them know when we have arrived on site
- our client management software allows clients to accept proposals, and view and pay invoices online from the comfort of their own home without needing to interact face to face with staff or crews
- employees are working 2m apart from each other
- all trucks have soap and water on board for frequent hand washing
- employees are being asked not to share tools
- employees wear gloves while working (yard gloves)
- trucks and toolboxes are cleaned regularly
- employees understand that they can choose not to come to work if they prefer, may request to be laid off temporarily
- employees are asked not to come to work if they are sick or have been in contact with anyone who is sick
What happens if non-essential businesses are asked to close?
We will immediately comply with any government requests to cease work.
Our professional organization, the International Society of Arboriculture, has released a statement proclaiming any safety related tree work as essential work. This includes road clearance (for visibility) and hazard mitigation, storm response etc.,
In that event, we will reduce our workforce to the few team members required to continue to keep our community safe and will defer all other work until the government allows businesses to reopen.
Please know that we will be available to help if you have a pressing safety concern during this time.