Special Newsletter
Dear Member.

RFABC hopes this first edition of the Covid-19 special newsletter, finds you safe and healthy. Recently, several of your colleagues and the RFABC zone representatives participated in the first Town Hall information sharing call. The purpose of this session was to connect with members from all areas of the province on issues /concerns facing folks in their respective operations. It was also a chance to share ideas around what approaches people are taking to address infrastructure during this period of facility closures. We were also very fortunate to have representatives from TSBC on the line, to provide us with answers to some of our operational questions.

At RFABC we are reaching out to our partners to help support our industry, during and after these difficult times. This will include regulatory bodies, cleaning experts and other related agencies. This newsletter is a summary of updates, ideas and answers to questions we received prior to the call. 

Our intent is to schedule information sessions with various stakeholder groups every couple of weeks. We appreciate this is not a perfect solution to support everyone’s needs, but these are unprecedented times and we will do our best to be there for you.

In closing, please connect with Dan Pagely: dan@rfabc.com  or 250 532 0160 with any questions and we will do our best to assist you.  

Here are your zone representatives: (click name for email address)

Lower Mainland Steve Napper
Thomson/Okanagan Mike Fetterer
Cariboo Central Craig Langille
East/West Kootenay Robert Baker
North B ob Corbett
Skeena Bulkley Shane Kirwin
Your answers to Staffing Requirements for Non risk Assessed and Risk assessed Refrigeration Plants (operational vs non operational)

Due to the current situation that has caused closure of arenas throughout the province of BC, we are aware of some uncertainty and have received requests for clarification regarding options for staffing required for refrigeration plants. The RFABC has been in consultation with Technical Safety BC and it is our intention that this message will provide clarification for asset owners to make informed decisions on what options are best suited for their plants. However, we recommend that best practice is to discuss with your refrigeration contractor, chief engineer and local safety inspector on what may be the best for your specific plant and situation whether to be operational or non-operational.

Would you like to have more information on Refrigeration in a future Town Hall session?
Building Services Reimagined
T he value of building services has been heightened during this pandemic. The new world is appreciating efforts of building services in keeping virus transmission from spreading.Facilities that are currently staffed are undergoing a revamped, thorough and regular cleaning processes. Current thoughts from the town hall include:
  • Ensuring safe distance processes are in place with contractors and staff during this shutdown
  • Planning for new cleaning protocols when facilities are reopening
  • Additional training for building services workers for maintaining public and staff safety.
  • Working alone procedures (WorkSafeBC support)

Cleaning and disinfecting public spaces (COVID-19)
Would you like to have more information on Building Services in a future Town Hall??
Staffing during a Pandemic
While most staff are laid off or working from home, the province has pockets of staff working within facilities. Stay safe out there.

Here are some examples of work in recreation centres
  • Contract work as if a normal shutdown was underway
  • Reception staff get their own office!
  • Food operations working with meals for community.
  • Staff reassigned to parks duties earlier than usual 
  • Project work for staff.
  • Day camp offered to children of first responders
  • Small fitness area created for staff still working

An issue with retention of auxiliary and part time staff. They hold many key roles with valuable certifications. If they do not return, the RFABC role with education and advocacy will be a key part of the business recovery process.
Would you like to have more information on Staff Retention in a future Town Hall?
Current and Future Emergency and Safety Plans
The new normal has yet to be defined. What is certain is the gradual building to an operational level. As an example, TSBC is offering remote inspections See here for more details. These measures may become a standard way to operate.

How many people knew that "zooming" could apply to easter dinner or happy hour?

Here are some examples from the first town hall:
  • Community support by using dormant facilities for homeless shelters and showering
  • Reconfiguration of muster stations so fewer numbers are gathering in an emergency
  • Ramping up working alone processes
  • Working with WorksafeBC on revising worker safety in the workplace plans.
  • modified emergency procedures for staff and contractors working during the COVID era
  • planning for access and distance limits in all parts of the operation; arena, pool, fitness.

Would you like to have more information on Emergency and Safety Planning in a future Town Hall?