Stay informed – the dedicated site for people in the Transport cluster

  • 31 July - Coronavirus Q&A

    2 months ago

    The below Transport Q&As have been prepared in line with advice that has been released by the Australian Government Chief Medical Officer and NSW Health.


    LATEST ADVICE AND INFORMATION


    CONFIRMED OR SUSPECTED CASES

    1. What do I do if I, or one of my staff have been exposed to suspected case.

    For reports of exposure to suspected cases, please complete the COVID-19 reporting form. You can find out more on information on the managing and reporting cases on stayinformed.com.au or call 133 877 for general enquiries.

    2. What if I or one of my staff is a confirmed case?

    For the reporting of confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19), call 1800 091 966 (24 hours) immediately.

    3. I have received a message from a venue/location that I attended advising me to self-isolate due to potential contact with a confirmed case. What should I do?

    Any direction to self-isolate will come from NSW Health or a health care professional. Please refer to the latest advice in the NSW Health alert to determine the appropriate action. If you are still unsure, speak to your manager or call 133 877. You may be required to provide evidence of a direction to self-isolate.

    4. My work colleague attended one of the COVID-19 case locations during the times and dates specified by NSW Health and then attended the workplace before the announcement to self-isolate was issued. I worked with them during that time, do I need to self-isolate?

    At this stage, only individuals who directly attended these venues during the times and dates specified are required to either self-isolate immediately or self-isolate if they develop symptoms, depending on the venue they visited. If you didn’t directly attend the venue you do not need to self-isolate. If you have had close contact with someone who is then confirmed as a COVID-19 case, NSW Health will contact you regarding the need to get tested and self-isolate. You should not be making this decision yourself. If you are concerned, speak to your manager or call 133 877.

    5. My housemate or immediate family member is being tested for Coronavirus. Do I need to stay away from work and self-isolate?

    If your household member has developed symptoms after attending one of the COVID-19 case locations during the times and dates specified by NSW Health and has gone to get tested, you should not attend the workplace until the results become available.

    In other circumstances, household contacts of people being tested for Coronavirus do not need to be in isolation unless specifically directed by NSW Health or a health professional. Someone who is suspected to have Coronavirus should stay in a different room from other people or be separated as much as possible. They should wear a surgical mask when in the same room as another person and when seeking medical care, and use a separate bathroom, if available. Avoid sharing household items.

    If your household member tests positive in either circumstance, NSW Health will contact you and other individuals who are identified as having close contact with them. You should not be making this decision yourself. NSW Health will provide advice in writing of your requirement to isolate and this will provide the evidence you need to access special leave or perform alternative duties at home where necessary. If you are concerned, speak to your manager or call 133 877.

    6. Will I be advised if one of my work colleagues tests positive?

    The health, safety and wellbeing of our employees, customers and community is a priority and we are taking all the necessary measures advised by NSW Health to help prevent the spread of the virus. If a work colleague develops symptoms and is confirmed as a COVID-19 case, NSW Health will determine close contacts, if any, and these people will be directed to self-isolate. If the staff member attended the workplace while infectious, there may also be additional safety measures taken, including sanitisation of the work location. The response would be specific to the circumstances of the situation and managed on a case by case basis.

    7. Where can I find a list of identified COVID-19 case locations?

    On the NSW Health website you can find a list of COVID-19 case locations. If you have visited any of these locations during the dates and times specified you should take the action specified by NSW Health. You must also inform your manager for reporting purposes.

    INCIDENTS OF COUGHING AND SPITTING

    8. What do if I’ve been coughed or spat on?

    The $5,000 fine for incidents of spitting and coughing on essentials workers is there to protect our frontline people. If you are the victim of an incident please advise your manager so they can report it through our normal incident reporting process, as well as reporting it to the COVID-19 Taskforce team using this reporting form. We have produced this short guide to support those affected and managers.

    BORDER INFORMATION

    9. What if I already have a permit?

    All permits to enter Victoria obtained prior to midnight on Tuesday 21 July have expired and people have to reapply for a new permit if they are required to cross the border. The tighter restrictions mean you must now carry a copy of your permit and produce it when directed by enforcement officers. You can reapply for a permit on the Service NSW Website.

    10. What does this mean for NSW residents?

    All NSW residents are strongly urged not to travel to Victoria. If you are a NSW resident returning from Victoria under a ‘NSW Resident Permit’ you are required to isolate for 14 days from your arrival into NSW.

    11. What does this mean for border zone residents?

    Border zone residents who live on the Victorian side of the border will only be permitted to enter NSW for limited activities such as to go to work or attend an education institution if they can’t work or learn from home, or to obtain medical care, supplies or health services. Border zone residents who live on the NSW side of the border must not travel outside of the border zone into Victoria other than for limited activities.

    12. Who should self-isolate with regard to the border?

    Any NSW resident that has entered NSW on a NSW Resident Permit must self-isolate for 14 days on arrival in NSW; any NSW Border Zone Resident who travels beyond the border zone into Victoria will be required to self-isolate for 14 days when they return; and any critical service worker who is entering NSW on a critical service worker permit must self-isolate while not performing those critical services.

    13. Do I need a pass to enter Queensland?

    The Queensland Government has advised that all visitors to the state now require a Border Declaration Pass. If you plan to visit Queensland or must travel over the border for work, you can get a pass by visiting the Queensland Government website.

    Every NSW registered vehicle crossing the border will be intercepted by Queensland Police. People who, in the past two weeks. have been in one of the local government areas declared a COVID-19 hotspot by the Queensland Government, will be denied entry. Passengers arriving at the Coolangatta Airport will be treated in the same way. You can find a listing of these hotspots on the Queensland Government website.

    FACE MASKS FOR OUR PEOPLE

    14. Who are we making masks available for?

    NSW Health strongly recommends that face masks are worn by all customer-facing people and people using public transport. In keeping with this advice, we are making masks available for our customer-facing and other operational staff who wish to wear them. This includes our people working on our public transport services, at interchanges, at heavy vehicle weighing stations, school crossing supervisors, concierge services and our people in operational roles such as traffic emergency patrols, boating safety officers and maintenance staff who wish to wear a mask.

    15. I'm an office-based worker, can I get a mask?

    Physical distancing can be maintained in our office locations and we're continuing to make our workplaces COVIDSafe for those of our people who need to use them. New measures such as guidance for physical distancing, new hygiene measures and capacity guidance in busy areas such as collaboration hubs or kitchens are being rolled out across our workplaces. Masks are not required in addition to these measures in the office. But please remember, those who can, should continue to work from home and where people wish to wear their own mask they can.

    16. Do customers need to wear a mask on our services?

    NSW Health now strongly recommends that customers wear face masks while using the NSW public transport network but it’s not compulsory. In line with NSW Health advice, people should practise physical distancing, ensure good hand hygiene, and not use public transport if unwell. The use of a face mask does not replace the need for these important measures.

    17. How do I get a mask for work?

    Please talk to your manager first or go to:

    18. Where can I find more information about masks?

    Please read our FAQs for more information.



    ADVICE FROM 29 MAY - PREVENTION


    1. What can I do to protect myself and others?

    The most important action we can take right now as leaders and as a community is to help contain the spread of infection. According to the health experts, including our own Dr Armand Casolin, the simplest, most effective step is to actively promote and practise good hygiene by:

    • washing hands thoroughly with soap and water – for at least 20 seconds,
    • using alcohol based hand sanitiser if hand washing facilities are not available
    • cover your nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with a tissue or a flexed elbow
    • avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth

    2. I have been in close contact with a confirmed case of Coronavirus but am not showing symptoms. Can I attend for work?

    In line with NSW Health advice (as of 17 April 2020), a close contact is defined as requiring:

    • face-to-face contact in any setting with a confirmed or probable case, for greater than 15 minutes cumulative over the course of a week, in the period extending from 48 hours before onset of symptoms in the confirmed or probable case, or
    • sharing of a closed space with a confirmed or probable case for a prolonged period (e.g. more than 2 hours) in the period extending from 48 hours before onset of symptoms in the confirmed or probable case.

    People who have been in close contact with any confirmed Coronavirus case must remain isolated at home for 14 days following exposure, unless advised otherwise by NSW Health. You should discuss with your manager about working from home if you are not showing any symptoms. If you cannot perform work from home, Special Leave will be granted for a period of up to 20 days.

    Please note, NSW Health will contact individuals who are identified as having close contact with a confirmed case. You should not be making this decision yourself. NSW Health will provide advice in writing of your requirement to isolate and this will provide the evdience you need to access special leave.

    3. I am aware that my team member has not complied with requirements to be absent from the workplace due to illness or for the purposes of self-isolation and attends work.

    Leaders must direct employees who are obviously unwell or those required to self-isolate to go home and seek appropriate medical advice.

    4. What is social distancing and when do I need to practice social distancing?

    Social distancing means reducing the number of close physical and social contacts we have with one another.

    Combining social distancing with good personal hygiene slows the spread of a pandemic. This helps protect the most vulnerable members of the community and reduces the impact of the pandemic on essential, life-saving health services.

    While practising social distancing, people can leave to seek medical care, buy food and supplies, exercise or go to work or education (if you can’t do so from home).

    For those activities outside the workplace or attendance at schools, universities and childcare - social distancing includes:

    • only being in public spaces with members of your household or one other person (two-person rule);
    • not shaking hands, hugging or kissing as a greeting;
    • keeping a distance of 1.5 metres between yourself and other people, where possible;
    • avoiding visiting vulnerable people, such as those in aged care facilities or hospitals, infants, or people with mpromised immune systems due to illness or medical treatment;
    • using debit and credit cards instead of cash and make use of online and self-serve transactions (for example Opal cards on public transport); and
    • taking public transport in off-peak periods if you can.

    For more information about social distancing, see the advice from the NSW Government here.

    5. Do I need to wear a face mask?

    Face masks are not recommended for the general public unless you are unwell and masks should be saved for people to use when they are sick. Information about the use of masks is located on the NSW Health website.


    WORKING FROM HOME IF YOU CAN

    7. Can I work from home?

    Based on advice from the NSW Government we are transitioning into working from home arrangements for those in roles where this is possible. This transition is not a directive, but an option to help us provide essential services to NSW. You can read more about working from home here. Your leader will take an active role in driving this planning.

    If you are working from home whilst also providing care to a family member, it is expected that you can balance caring responsibilities with your ability to undertake productive work. Other leave provisions can apply if you are required to undertake caring responsibilities.


    PEOPLE AT GREATEST RISK

    8. What is the definition of 'at risk' people?

    During this uncertain time it is our priority to support our people. We know that this situation has the potential to create anxiety for employees with existing health conditions and concerns about their level of risk. Having discussions with your manager about your individual situation will enable us to support you in the best way possible.

    A sensitive common sense approach should be adopted, including assessing the risk for employees with pre-existing severe medical conditions, who have significant concerns for their wellbeing. Irrespective of age, employees with an impaired immune system (such as people who have cancer or HIV, or who take high dose corticosteroids) should be considered at risk, and work from home, alternate duties or leave arrangements should be explored.

    Additionally, the government definitions of those considered ‘at risk’ includes:

    • people aged 70 years and over
    • people aged 65 years and over with chronic medical conditions
    • people with a compromised immune system
    • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples 50 years and older with one or more chronic medical conditions

    You can find more information on medical conditions here, which is in line with the Australian Government advice.

    9. What are the working arrangements to protect ‘at risk’ people?

    Employees who are considered at a higher risk of infection will be transitioned to working from home arrangements, where this is possible in their role. Your leader will take an active role in planning this transition. We strongly encourage you to consider the option to stay at home now and we will support you to do so.

    If it is not possible to work from home, and no alternate duties are available for you, you will be able to access paid special leave.

    You should provide evidentiary documentation within a reasonable timeframe (i.e. within 7 days). Options for evidentiary requirements to support a request for special leave due to chronic medical condition may include:

    • Medical certificate (either hard copy or emailed from the doctor)
    • Evidence of a phone consultation with your doctor
    • Note and/or certificate from a pharmacist
    • Other medical record or report that details the condition

    We remain fully supportive of all employees at this time and while the above advice is recommendent, affected staff can choose to remain in the workplace if they wish. If you choose this option, no evidentiary documentation is needed.

    10. What are the arrangements for employees who care for vulnerable people?

    Employees can access Special Leave if they are unable to work from home and are required to care for a member of their family who is at risk and cannot attend their usual caring or educational facility.


    Employees should discuss their particular circumstances with their leader. Employees should provide evidence of the family members at risk status. This does not apply where an employee is providing support to at risk people, such as shopping for elderly parents.


    11. What precautions should I take if I am living with a vulnerable person?

    There are some sensible tips from NSW Health in their Home Isolation guidance that can also be applied when living with someone ‘at risk’ to help prevent the spread of the virus.


    This includes practical advice on separating yourself from others in the house and practicing good hand hygiene, such as:

    • not sharing a room with people who are at risk of severe disease;
    • using a separate bathroom, if available;
    • avoiding shared or communal areas; and
    • washing hands before entering an area used by other people, after using the bathroom and after coughing or sneezing.


    12. I cannot go to work because I am caring for a sick family member, what should I do?


    You should discuss this with your manager. Some employees may be able to work from home where you can balance caring responsibilities with your ability to undertake productive work. If this is not possible, 20 days paid special leave will be provided, as per the Department of Premier and Cabinet Circular. If the period of care exceeds 20 days you should apply for leave using your existing leave entitlements.


    TRAVEL

    13. I have returned from overseas travel and am not showing symptoms, what should I do?

    From 16 March onwards, if you have returned to Australia from overseas from any country, you must self-isolate for 14 days from the day you arrive back in Australia as a precaution and monitor yourself for symptoms.

    As of 11:59pm on Saturday 28 March, all travellers arriving in Australia will be required to undertake their mandatory 14 day self-isolation at designated facilities (for example, a hotel). Special leave (up to 20 days) will be granted for these purposes with travel documents accepted as evidence. Further details can be found on NSW Health website.

    14. What arrangements apply for international and domestic travel required for my role?

    The Australian Government has advised that from midday on 25 March, all Australians are restricted from travelling overseas. In addition, Tasmania, Northern Terrorities, Western Australia, Queensland and South Australia have announced border closures. See specific State and Terrority government websites for further information.

    The NSW Treasury Managed Fund (TMF) can assist with obtaining a credit or refund to our budgets where flights have been cancelled.


    CONCERNED OR FEELING UNWELL

    15. I have returned from overseas travel and I am now showing symptoms, what should I do?

    You should not attend work and should seek medical advice. Refer to the health advice which is located on the NSW Health website or call healthdirect on 1800 022 222. You should apply for sick leave to cover your absence.

    16. I came into contact with an individual who was ill and I am concerned they may have had Coronavirus, what should I do?

    Coronavirus is not currently circulating widely in the community in NSW so where contact occurs with an individual who is unwell, they are unlikely to have a confirmed case of Coronavirus.

    If you discover the close contact occurred with an individual who was subsequently confirmed as having Coronavirus please refer to question 2 above.

    17. What should I do if I feel unwell and live in one of the areas considered to be a hotspot for Coronavirus?

    The NSW Government is increasing testing in areas where there is a small number of community transmission cases but the source hasn’t been identified. The advice is to get tested if you live, work or have been active in any of the areas considered a hotspot, and you are experiencing symptoms including fever, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath. You can view the list of hotspots on the NSW Health website along with information on what to do if you are feeling unwell.

    18. What’s the latest advice for pregnant women?

    It is understandable that pregnant women may be feeling anxious or worried about their health and the health of their unborn baby during this time.

    The Australian Government does not list pregnant women as an ‘at risk’ group for Coronavirus. The current medical advice is that there is no suggestion that pregnant women are more susceptible to Coronavirus, become more severely unwell or that it harms the foetus. If contracted, it is expected that most pregnant women will experience only mild or moderate cold/flu like symptoms. However, pregnant women are potentially at increased risk of complications from any respiratory disease due to the physiological changes that occur in pregnancy.

    We need to be sensitive to their situation and the fact that they may be understandably anxious and support working from home options or reallocation to lower risk duties wherever possible.

    19. With the return to school for face to face learning, what is the rate of testing for the virus in children?

    The rate of testing in children is less than in adults but, nevertheless, still high with over 10,000 children tested in April, prior to the relaxation of testing criteria. Children are testing positive much less compared to adults.


  • 29 July: Transport cluster leader livestream

    6 days ago

    Hear the latest updates on what’s happening with Coronavirus in NSW and Victoria, including how we want to recover and move forward from the pandemic. You'll also an update on Evolving Transport.

    Joost De Kock, Deputy Secretary, Customer Strategy and Technology joined us to share more on our recovery vision and how coming out of Coronavirus we have the opportunity to reshape the role of Transport.

    Kathy Baker, Executive Director, People Experience also provided an update on what’s happening with our new ways of working pilots and how our future ways of working will be shaped by the experiences of our people.


  • 15 July: Transport cluster leader livestream

    13 days ago

    Hear the latest updates on what’s happening with Coronavirus including the recent border closure with Victoria, the leadership results from our second Pulse Check Survey and how we’re continuing to make our workplaces COVIDSafe. To help me do this, I’ll be joined by:

    • Mark Kourouche, Associate Director for South and West Operations in ROM, who will give us a first-hand update on how we’re responding to the situation in Victoria and share what’s happening on the frontline at the border.
    • Trudi Mares, Executive Director for Shared Services, who will talk to us about how we’re continuing to make our workplaces COVIDSafe for our people.


  • Update on Coronavirus situation - Crossroads Hotel and Picton Hotel

    21 days ago

    Advice for any of our people who’ve visited the Crossroads Hotel or the Picton Hotel

    NSW Heath has put out a public health alert in response to the new cases of Coronavirus. If any of our people have been to the Crossroads Hotel or Picton Hotel between Friday 3 July and Friday 10 July, they should not attend work and should:

    • Immediately self-isolate until 14 days after they were last there
    • Attend a clinic for testing even if they have no symptoms – this is critical. A full list of clinic locations can be found on the NSW Health website
    • Watch for symptoms and get retested should any respiratory symptoms occur
    • Even if they get a negative test stay in isolation for 14 days.
    • If any employee tests positive for Coronavirus they should take sick leave supported by appropriate evidence. All positive test results are required to be reported to the Transport reporting line 1800 091 966 (operating 24 hours a day) immediately
    • People must also self-isolate and get tested if they have visited one of the other locations listed in the alert during the dates specified sites and they experience CVOID-19 symptoms.


  • Update on the situation in Victoria, border closures and how we're responding

    27 days ago

    Update on the situation in Victoria and border closures

    From today, the NSW Government has temporarily closed our state’s border with Victoria, with strict penalties in place for anyone who breaches the new rules. The closure came into effect from 12.01am Wednesday 8 July with both NSW Police and the Australian Defence Force deployed to enforce the measure.

    Key things for you to know about these changes

    The situation in Victoria is evolving and we’re continuing to work closely with NSW Health and Police to make sure we have the right measures and information to help keep our people and customers safe. We’re working with our people and services that are directly impacted by these changes. Here are the key things you need to know:

      • Don’t cross the border – if you don’t need to cross the border, please don’t.
      • Who’s authorised to enter NSW – our people who need to cross the border can apply for a permit under one of the following categories; a. Providing critical services, including the movement of freight or persons on a commercial basis or the maintenance and repair of critical infrastructure, and b. Border community residents, which is a person who resides in a border community.
      • If you need one, apply for a permit ASAP – if you live or work near the border and are required to cross you must obtain a permit. We are asking our people who fall in this category to apply for a permit as soon as possible by going to the Service NSW site. You can find more information about how to apply for a permit here.
      • If you've recently been in Victoria – you must advise your manager prior to returning to the workplace if you have been to Victoria, in the 14 days before you are due to return to work.
      • If you’re unwell – please remember that at all times, if you are feeling unwell you should not come to work.
      • If you have any questions – if you have concerns or questions please talk to your manager and please let them know whether you have a permit to enter NSW. If you have a question on the border closure or application for a permit, you can contact the general enquiries hotline on 133 877.

    Other new measures in place to prevent the spread of Coronavirus

    There are a number of other measures that come into effect today to support this closure, including:

      • Road closures in place across the NSW and Victorian border
      • Any planes from Victoria arriving at NSW airports will be met by police and health staff
      • NSW residents returning from Victoria are required to self-isolate for 14 days
      • To enter NSW, people must apply for a permit to enter NSW and if any inaccurate information is provided in the application, a new on-the-spot fine of $4,000 will apply
      • Anyone who fails to comply with the new rules could face up to six months in prison or a fine of up to $11,000 or both.

    To find out more on the Public Health Orders, visit the What we're doing page.

  • 1 July: Livestream for Transport cluster leaders

    about 1 month ago

    Hear an update from Secretary Rodd Staples and Mark Hutchings from the COVID Taskforce on our COVIDSafe Transport Plan and how we’re managing the increase in customers on our public transport network. We also want to hear from you to make sure future livestreams are on what you want to hear about and who you’d like to hear from. Take our quick seven minute survey to tell us your feedback.


  • 17 June: Livestream for Transport cluster leaders

    about 2 months ago

    Leaders across the Transport cluster joined the livestream on Wednesday 17 June to get the latest on our recovery phase with the Secretary of Transport Rodd Staples and Tracey Taylor, Acting Chief People Officer.

    Joining Secretary Rodd Staples in this session was Tim Reardon – Secretary, Premier & Cabinet. Tim, who was previously Secretary at Transport, shared his insights on some of the priorities at a whole of government level as we move into recovery and gave his thoughts on our response to keep the state moving during this unusual time.

    Watch a recording of the livestream below.


  • Coronavirus livestream for frontline leaders - 12 June

    about 2 months ago

    Frontline leaders across the Transport cluster joined the last in the current series weekly livestreams on Friday 12 June to get the latest on our response to Coronavirus with the Secretary of Transport Rodd Staples, Acting Chief People Officer Tracey Taylor and Chief Health Officer Dr Armand Casolin.

    Also joining them this week was:

    • Elizabeth Mildwater, Deputy Secretary for Greater Sydney, who reflected on some of incredible efforts from our frontline people during the Coronavirus outbreak.
    • Charlie Elias, Program Manager on the COVID-19 Taskforce, who shared some of the innovations we’ve developed to help our customers across NSW travel safely at this time.

    As usual, leaders from all agencies had the opportunity to ask questions. Watch a recording of the livestream below. Starting next week, the livestreams for all people leaders will take place on a fortnightly basis each Wednesday.


  • Coronavirus livestream for people leaders - 10 June

    about 2 months ago

    Leaders across the Transport cluster joined the weekly Coronavirus livestream on Wednesday 10 June to get the latest on our response to Coronavirus with the Secretary of Transport Rodd Staples and Kathy Baker, Executive Director for People Experience. Also joining them this week was Anne Hayes, Deputy Secretary for Corporate Services.

    In this week's session leaders we're updated on the latest developments on our workplace in the future, flexibility possibilities and ways of working post Coronavirus. It also covered what leaders need to do with their teams to begin planning for how we work in this ‘new normal’, providing information on how we are keeping our workplaces safe, a timeline and tools to help leaders.

    As usual, leaders had the opportunity to ask questions. Watch a recording of the livestream below.



  • Coronavirus livestream for frontline leaders - 5 June

    2 months ago

    Frontline leaders across the Transport cluster joined the weekly livestream on Friday 5 June to get the latest on our response to Coronavirus with the Secretary of Transport Rodd Staples, Julie-Anne Tooth, Director for People and Culture at NSW TrainLink, and Chief Health Officer Dr Armand Casolin.

    Also joining them this week was:

    • Anna Andrews - Director Operations, Regional and Outer Metropolitan - who spoke about how her teams have been working together with our partners to keep our customers, goods and services safely and efficiently moving on our regional networks, and supporting the regional NSW economy at this time.
    • Adam Berry - lead of the Incident Management Team on the COVID-19 Taskforce - who shared some early insights on how our public transport and roads have been this week following the easing of regional travel restrictions.

    As usual, leaders from all agencies had the opportunity to ask questions. Watch a recording of the livestream below.