The MHBA continues to carefully monitor the situation surrounding the spread of the coronavirus in Manitoba. The MHBA has and will continue to recommend to our members that they follow the advice of Health Canada and Manitoba Health’s public health officials.

Here is a further update from the MHBA:

Manitoba Releases Road Map for Recovery:

Yesterday, the Province of Manitoba announced its multi-phased plan to gradually restore services, open some businesses and increase recreational opportunities while maintaining social distancing advice. As of May 4, a variety of non-essential health-care and retail businesses will have the option to reopen under strict guidelines. All businesses and venues will be required to continue following social distancing and stringent cleaning practices to protect both employees and customers. Full details of the Province’s plan can be found HERE.

The Province’s announcement and further details can be found HERE.

The MHBA stresses that the Province’s announcement is not a signal to return to “business as usual”. The MHBA strongly recommends that all members continue to implement the preventative measures they have put in place on their worksites and show homes.

City of Winnipeg Update – Building Permit Extensions:

The MHBA has received the following update from the City of Winnipeg regarding building permit extensions:

The City of Winnipeg is committed to supporting homeowners and businesses during this difficult time. If you have recently taken out a building permit, but are experiencing delays getting your project started, you can request a 6 Month Permit Start Extension by completing the online form at: https://ppdportal.winnipeg.ca/Permits/InspSched/DefectExt_RequestForm.jsp

Please provide a brief explanation and length of extension requested (up to 6 months) to reschedule your initial inspection(s). We will waive the requirement for a deposit at this time. However, please note that permits are valid for 3 years from date of issuance, and further extensions will be evaluated and may require payment of a refundable deposit before being approved.

Questions about permits can be directed to ppd-permit@winnipeg.ca or by calling the Permits Direct line at 204-986-5140.

MHBA COVID-19 Resources for Members:

As the COVID-19 event continues to unfold, the MHBA has set up a dedicated web page, https://www.homebuilders.mb.ca/mhba-covid-19-resource-page/, to ensure you have quick access to important information necessary to help you and your businesses navigate this tumultuous time.

This dedicated page includes links to the MHBA’s COVID-19 updates, plus a variety of health and business resources and will be updated as new information and resources are made available. We will still continue providing updates to you via email as new information becomes available to keep you as informed as possible.

CSAM has also updated its resource page with additional information. You can visit the CSAM page at https://www.constructionsafety.ca/covid-19-and-manitobas-construction-industry/

Preventative Measures:

THIS IS NOT BUSINESS AS USUAL!

Collectively, Manitoba’s residential construction industry must continue to take as many preventative measures as possible to help protect their employees and help ensure business continuity against COVID-19. 

Our industry must also demonstrate the protocols, as the public, our workers, and the government are definitely watching. Companies that do not implement these measures are not only putting their own business activities at risk, they are putting all residential construction activities at risk. 

The MHBA strongly recommends that all of our members implement these measures, whether in your offices, showrooms, worksites or show homes.

We are recommending that you implement the following best practices immediately if you have not already done so:

  • -If any employee or trade has any flu-like symptoms, no matter how minor, have them stay home;
  • -Limit the number of trades working at one time on your worksites and have your trades strictly adhere to this directive;
  • -Practice social distancing measures in all of your workplaces and worksites;
  • -Keep hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes stocked and available if possible;
  • -Have workers sanitize their hands frequently during the day;
  • -Have show homes/rooms available only by appointment and limit the number of groups/people entering your show home/room to one at a time to ensure your company is following the Public –Health Authority’s guidelines;
  • -Enable those staff who can work from home to do so;
  • -Disinfect frequently used surfaces (Door knobs, countertops, handrails, etc.) on a regular basis;
  • -Post signage at entrances to worksites, your business and show home/rooms asking those who have recently travelled internationally or those who have any flu-like symptoms to not enter;
  • -Avoid greetings that involve touching, including shaking hands;
  • -Wash your hands properly and frequently; and
  • -Provide disposable towels/napkins should people wash their hands in your show home/workplace. Please do not use reusable (regular) towels in your bathrooms.

Reminder – Exterior Trades:

With exterior trades likely to begin working on sites in the coming days, the MHBA reminds you to please discuss the preventative measures with all of your trades on site. These measures need to be in place for workers outside as well as inside when on site. Please review this important information with all of your trades.

Guidelines for customers visiting homes under construction:

We have heard that builders are seeing customers attend to their new homes under construction unannounced on a more frequent basis. The MHBA Workplace, Safety & Health Committee recommends that all builders contact their current customers proactively to inform them that visiting their new home under construction without an appointment can potentially put the activities on the worksite at risk and can impede their possession date.

All visits to construction sites should be done by appointment only and with the full awareness of both the builder and their site supervisor. No unscheduled visits from customers should be allowed under the current circumstances. This is for the protection of both the workers onsite as well as the customers themselves, who are entering an active construction site and undoubtedly not have the proper PPE on that is required on an active site.

A reminder as well that no workers should be onsite and active during a customer visit.

The MHBA recommends that all builders please share this important reminder to their customers proactively to help avoid this situation.

Please share this update and discuss these important measures with your staff. Site Supervisors should also share and discuss this information with all trades on site.

 

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