Returning to workplaces in a COVID-Safe way

The information on this page is designed to support staff who are returning to DCJ workplaces. If your role is able to function under a flexible working arrangement, please consult with your manager on the best working arrangement for you, your team and our service users. Frontline staff should continue to follow working arrangements as set out by their manager and local leaders.

COVID-Safety in the workplace

COVID-safety in the workplace guidance poster

Our COVID-Safe workplace guide (PDF, 122.0 KB) outlines the simple steps for you to follow to help keep DCJ COVID-Safe.

Preparing to attend the workplace

Not feeling well? Stay away!

If you are feeling sick or showing any COVID-19 symptoms at all you must stay away from the workplace, including your normal workplace, another site, client visits or other outreach.

You must stay away from the workplace and self-isolate immediately if you have:

  • had a COVID-19 test and tested positive to COVID-19
  • been otherwise instructed by NSW Health to self-isolate.

Tested positive to COVID-19? Stay home, rest and tell your manager

If you have tested positive to COVID-19 it is important that you tell your manager. If you have been in the workplace within a 48-hour period of becoming COVID-19 positive you will need to report this via SafetySuite. For information on how and when to report go to Managing COVID-19 cases in the workplace.

Please note: Due to the high-risk nature of custodial environments, Corrective Services NSW and Youth Justice staff who work in these settings should refer to the existing COVID-19 protocols, and report all incidents to the CSNSW COVID Command Post.

Book a desk before you attend the workplace

All staff must book a desk before attending the office. The desk booking process is in place to help track attendance for return to workplace purposes.

Staff with fixed desks do not need to use the booking tool but their manager needs to know when they are attending the workplace.

Keeping personal belongings sanitised

Before using personal belongings please wipe them and the desk down with the wipes provided. At the end of the day remember to wipe your desk and personal belongings down before storing them away.

Travelling for work

When attending your workplace or visiting another workplace, please help us keep DCJ COVID-Safe by following all requests and processes.

Travelling on public transport

When commuting on public transport, you must follow all requirements, including wearing a facemask when using public transport, hire vehicles, taxis and rideshare services in Sydney, the Blue Mountains, Wollongong and Shellharbour local government areas. This includes when waiting for public transport at a bus or light rail stop, train station or ferry wharf. For the latest mask wearing advice, regularly check the NSW Health website.

Managers are encouraged to discuss with staff flexible work arrangements, including start and finish times where possible, to reduce the impact on public transport.

Managers or staff can contact strategicinitiatives@facs.nsw.gov.au if they have any questions about flexible work.

Travelling by car for work purposes

Staff are encouraged to wear a face mask when travelling for work with others in a vehicle. When using fleet vehicles staff must clean the inside before and after use with the wipes provided. Please follow additional operational arrangements as set by your division for vehicle travel.

Regional travel for work purposes

When travelling for work it is important to take precautions to avoid spreading COVID-19 by:

  • practising thhe recommended 1.5m physical distancing
  • practicing good hand hygiene
  • taking extra care if you're around vulnerable people
  • If you have any symptoms, even if they are only mild get tested either via a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) kit or a PCR test.

Where possible to minimise the risk of community transmission and in line with current work related travel policies (FACS) staff should explore the following alternate options to travelling:

  • teleconferencing
  • video-conferencing
  • other means of communication.

Travel advice and checklist for staff travelling to remote Aboriginal or vulnerable communities

It is crucial that DCJ staff do not visit Aboriginal communities if they:

  • are ill, no matter how mild the symptoms
  • have had contact with someone with COVID-19 in the past 14 days.

The risk to Aboriginal communities from visiting workers could increase depending on the nature of the work, the locations the worker has travelled from and work practices.

To mitigate this risk, branches with staff who travel to rural and remote Aboriginal communities should provide detailed actions in their COVID-19 Safety Plan. These should include consideration of the issues outlined in this checklist.

In the workplace

Register your attendance

If directed by your manager, QR code check-in when entering a DCJ workplace. Highly controlled workplaces such as Correctional and Youth Justice centres and some courts may use other methods such as roster information.

Make sure you sit at the specific desk you prebooked. The desk booking system will be used to help us keep track of how office space is used.

Keep DCJ COVID-Safe. Use the four lines of defence

To help stop the spread of COVID-19 we ask that you practice the following four lines of defence when in DCJ workplaces:

  1. Stay home if you’re unwell, particularly if you've tested positive to COVID-19.
  2. Practice regular hand hygiene by using the hand sanitiser, wipes, and soap available in the workplace. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Please do not remove these products from the workplace as they are for use by all.
  3. Maintain a physical distance of 1.5 metres where possible.
  4. Follow all facemask wearing advice as set out by your manager and divisional leader for your role. Please also read the NSW Health facemask rules page.

Find your nearest waste bin

To keep our workplaces COVID-Safe we have removed personal waste bins from each desk and installed additional bins in communal areas for general waste. At 6 Parramatta Square, these can be found in the kitchen and printing areas, and toilets on each level.

Moving bins from desks to communal areas also supports the NSW Government’s commitment of having a resource productive public sector with less impact on the environment as outlined in the NSW Government Resource Efficiency Policy.

Using shared spaces and surfaces

When using shared spaces like meeting rooms, breakout areas and kitchens it is important that we keep them COVID-Safe. Play your part by:

  • maintaining a physical distance of 1.5 metres where possible
  • wearing a mask if you wish to continue doing so
  • wiping down items and surfaces with the wipes provided before and after use
  • keeping our workplaces clutter-free by storing personal and shared items away correctly.

The following resources on the DCJ intranet are available to assist you:

Last updated:

23 Sep 2022

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We acknowledge Aboriginal people as the First Nations Peoples of NSW and pay our respects to Elders past, present, and future. 

Informed by lessons of the past, Department of Communities and Justice is improving how we work with Aboriginal people and communities. We listen and learn from the knowledge, strength and resilience of Stolen Generations Survivors, Aboriginal Elders and Aboriginal communities.

You can access our apology to the Stolen Generations.

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