Body Corporate General Manager Steven Garland, discusses health and safety and trends regarding body corporate management in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic.
We are slowly being prepared by Government for the ‘new normal’ in the aftermath of the pandemic, and shared living communities will need to think carefully about the impact on Bodies Corporate, Resident Association and Cross lease properties.
The Government has now mandated vaccination for the health and teaching professions and companies are coming forward almost daily with their own similar mandates. Soon, those that are doubled jabbed will be able to provide evidence of this in the form of certification and will be allowed to travel, dine and frequent entertainment facilities. Those who are not vaccinated will not.
Our APM managers are already seeing some of our Committees begin the same process of introducing vaccination requirements to trades and general service providers that attend their properties. We have identified some companies that are unable or unwilling to demonstrate that their staff are all fully vaccinated, and we have replaced them with those that can. I don’t see this is necessarily being a trend because companies will have to adapt and get their staff vaccinated if they want to continue operating. Once the vaccination rates rise and the certification process is implemented, things will open up and businesses that are not prepared will likely suffer.
There are genuine Health and Safety concerns for all of us. Residents, who are or will be fully vaccinated, will want some certainty around the vaccination status of people that are coming on site, and vice versa for those called out to undertake work. The risk of an unvaccinated tradesperson bringing the virus onsite is very real, but it works both ways. If you are a landlord will you insist that your tenant is fully vaccinated? What about fellow owners or your Committee member colleagues?
We are starting to ask Committees to think about how they will modify their unique Health and Safety Plans and introduce policies around service providers, residents and tenants, and their interaction with the building. The virus is the new hazard and masks and vaccinations are the control measure. So updating the Hazard Register is a great place to start.
Virtual meetings continue to be the norm and until we reach Alert Level 2, are the only way we can hold General Meetings. APM has set a goal to aim for 100% of its team to be fully vaccinated and it is not a stretch to imagine that when eventually we do get back to meeting in person, owners (and managers) may need to have their vaccination certification handy to be able to be in one another’s presence again.
General Manager – Body Corporate
Auckland Property Management
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