Alert: Notifications and correspondence during COVID-19 restrictions

We are operating at reduced capacity due to the COVID 19 Alert Level Two requirements. Find out more about how to correspond and notify us during this time.

You might also hear from us as we proactively call businesses about how they're operating safely during Alert Level Two. 

Businesses and services need to meet public health requirements under the COVID-19 Public Health Response (Alert Level 2) Order 2020. This has been brought in by the Government to set out what businesses, services and others need to do to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

We have information about what Alert Level 2 means for your business or service, to help you meet requirements in the Order. Remember that you must also continue to meet all your obligations under the Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 (HSWA).

The Order has general and specific requirements. All businesses and services must comply, so far as is reasonably practicable, with:

  • the general requirements and
  • each of the specific requirements that applies to their activities.

A business or service operating different activities on the same premises should ensure it’s operating the different activities in line with the requirements relevant to that activity. For example, a café at a garden centre needs to meet food and drink requirements as well as general requirements, and the garden centre needs to meet general requirements.

The Order excludes:

  • health and education services
  • public transport services
  • specified Crown facilities and services.

The following guidance focuses on COVID-19 public health requirements in relation to work health and safety.

Requirements for businesses and services 

These are the general requirements for all businesses and services.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure all people (excluding workers) on the work premises or who use its services keep two metres away from each other and from the workers wherever possible (except for controlled access businesses and services, where one metre distance applies)
  • ensure all workers keep one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable 
  • manage the risk of COVID-19 spread if physical distances aren't fully maintained.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all workers and those who carry out work for the business or service.

Examples include: massage and hairdressing services, and professional or semi-professional sports

Excludes: health and education services

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure all people keep one metre away from each other and from workers wherever possible, except where physical contact or close proximity is required to deliver the service
  • keep workers apart one metre to the greatest extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services including workers.

When working closer than one metre people aren’t required to wear PPE, like masks. However many workers and customers may want workers to wear masks.

If you choose to use PPE, the type is up to you and should be based on the level of risk for your business or service (e.g. number of workers and clients), the working proximity, the physical work area, and the length of time people are together).

Healthcare workers need to refer to guidance about PPE provided by the Ministry of Health(external link)

Examples include: shopping malls, supermarkets, market places, takeaway food stores, retail stores.

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure all people (excluding workers) on the work premises or who use its services keep two metres away from each other and from the workers to the greatest extent practicable
  • ensure all workers keep one metre away from each other to the greatest extent possible
  • manage the risk of COVID-19 spread if physical distances aren’t fully maintained.

Gathering limits don’t apply to retail. However, capacity is limited by how many people can fit in to the space and still comply with the physical distancing requirements.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records or register for all workers and those who carry out work for the business or service.

Note retail busineese don't need to keep contact tracing records for customers.

For takeaway outlets, in addition to the requirements above, food can be ordered from the counter of any business, irrespective of whether customers are able to dine-in or not.

Examples include: restaurants, cafés, bars

Excludes: accommodation services (eg, room service at hotels), businesses or services providing food or drink to their workers, vending machines at workplaces, cinemas or theatres selling food or drink to customers seated inside.

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

Restaurants

For physical distancing:

  • the overall limit on numbers is 100 in a ‘defined space’. (A defined space is an indoor space or outdoor space with walls – temporary or permanent – that substantially divide that space from other spaces. An outdoor space is also a single space if there is at least two metres between all groups in that space and any other people.)
  • multiple groups of 100 are allowed provided they are in separate ‘defined spaces’
  • one metre physical distancing is required and there must be at least one metre between tables
  • only one server serves at any table, to the greatest extent practicable
  • customers must be seated at a table except where using the toilet, paying or departing, ordering and collecting food and drinks
  • ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter is allowed for non-licensed premises only, provided that physical distancing is maintained.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep records to enable contact tracing for workers and customers.

Bars

  • The same food and drink requirements (see above) apply, except ordering and collecting food and drinks at the counter isn’t permitted.
  • Customers can’t play pool or a gaming machine in the same area that food and drink is being consumed – though businesses are free to set up pool tables or gaming machines in a clearly separate space to the food and drink area.
  • Customers can sit on a bar stool at a high table. It doesn’t have to be a traditional type of table and chairs.

Examples include: offices, factories, warehouses, manufacturing plants

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

Excludes: retail businesses

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure that all people who enter the workplace, use its services, or carry out work for the business or services remain at least one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable
  • keep workers apart one metre to the greatest extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services, including workers.

Note the one metre requirement applies to shared building areas such as stairwells, lifts, and foyers.

Examples include: gyms

Excludes: retail businesses

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure that all people who enter the workplace, use its services or carry out work for the business or services remain at least one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable
  • keep workers apart one metre to the greatest extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services, including workers.

Examples include: cinemas, theatres, stadiums, concert venues, conference venues, casinos

Excludes: retail businesses

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements. For example if the event facility is providing food and drink for consumption on site, then the food and drink requirements apply, except where food is served within a cinema. If the part of the event facility serving food or drink is clearly separated from the rest of the event facility, then the food and drink requirements only apply to the part of the premises serving food and drink.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure that all people who enter the workplace, use its services or carry out work for the business or services remain at least one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable
  • keep workers apart one metre to the extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained
  • permit no more than 100 customers or clients to be in a defined space in the workplace at any one time (excluding workers). (A defined space is an indoor space or outdoor space with walls – temporary or permanent – that substantially divide that space from other spaces. An outdoor space is also a single space if there is at least two metres between all groups in that space and any other people.)

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services, including workers.

Cinemas

For physical distancing:

  • customers (other than groups of friends and whānau) must be seated one metre apart
  • there is a 100 person limit on attendees per individual cinema. (More than 100 people are allowed across the entire cinema complex provided physical distancing requirements are met.)
  • whānau and friends may sit together in a group of no more than 100.

For contact tracing:

  • record keeping for the purposes of contact tracing is required.

Cinemas can serve food and drinks while people are seated.

Casinos

For physical distancing:

  • as a controlled access venue, one metre physical distancing must be maintained
  • as an event facility there can only be 100 patrons in a defined space in the casino. (However, a gaming floor can be divided into separate areas if there are walls put up (permanent or temporary.)
  • dining and bar areas must comply with hospitality requirements – seated, separated, single server, 100 person maximum and must be separated from gaming areas.

For contact tracing:

  • contact tracing records are required to be kept for workers and customers.

Examples include: swimming pools, libraries, museums

Excludes: retail businesses

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure that all people who enter the workplace, use its services or carry out work for the business or services remain at least one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable. Capacity is limited by how many people can fit in the facility while meeting the one metre distancing requirement.
  • keep workers apart one metre to the extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services, including workers

These businesses and services must also follow the general requirements for all businesses and services, where they don’t contradict the specific requirements.

For physical distancing you are required to:

  • ensure that all people who enter the workplace, use its services or carry out work for the business or services remain at least one metre away from each other to the greatest extent practicable
  • keep workers apart one metre to the greatest extent practicable
  • mitigate the risks where physical distancing requirements aren’t fully maintained.

Note if there is a gathering of friends and whānau (customers/clients) in the workplace they don’t need to maintain physical distance within that group.

For contact tracing you are required to:

  • keep contact tracing records for all people who enter the work premises or use its services, including workers.

For contact tracing funeral directors/organisers are required to:

  • make sure contact tracing records are kept of all funeral service or tangihanga attendees (including workers).

Maximum attendance:

  • 100 people (excluding workers)

Ministry of Health requirements for funerals and tangihanga(external link)

Personal protective equipment (PPE) isn’t a requirement under the Order. If you choose to use PPE as a COVID-19 measure, you need to follow Ministry of Health guidance to make sure you and your workers use it safely(external link).