On February 16, 2022, Dr. Henry updated her earlier Order regarding workplace health and safety. Employers are no longer required to allow employees to work from home.
Specifically, the earlier Order said: “An employer must allow workers to work from their private residence, if possible, given the nature of the work involved, unless the employer has an operational requirement to have the worker work at the workplace”
This part of the provincial health order was deleted on February 16, 2022. The past and current Order can be viewed here.
Employers are still required to have a COVID-19 safety plan in place and masks are still required in some settings.
This revised Order will now pave the way for some employers to require employees to return to their workplaces if they have been allowing remote work. Employers have the power to direct where employees work.
Some employers may have allowed remote work on a temporary basis due to COVID-19, but can require employees to return to the physical workplace if they want to require that. Some accommodations for remote work may be required in limited circumstances based on protected characteristics in the BC Human Rights Code.