A Message from the BCIA President, Terry Sharp

As the Coronavirus (Covid-19) crisis continues to develop we are faced with a situation which nobody could have prepared for.

As an industry we are concerned about the impact this crisis will have not just on our businesses but also on our families, friends, colleagues, clients and customers. Many of you are also faced with financial and business-related challenges in the workplace and the overriding feeling is that we need clarity, we need some answers, and we need them now.

The BCIA has been asked for guidance in many areas such as whether we should still be working on construction sites and indeed whether it is safe for us to carry on working at all.

As the situation continues to change, often on a daily basis it is clear that nobody has all the answers but throughout the industry there are a number of organisations who are working with the Government and regulatory bodies to provide as much information and guidance as possible. The BCIA is keen to support this work and will continue to do so both now and in the future.

The BCIA is not in a position to provide its own guidance or to advise you if it is safe to carry on working, but it is clear that what we should all be doing is to follow the advice which is being issued by the Government. The safety and health of everyone within our industry is paramount and must remain so. If we look back six months the decision-making process for working on sites was based purely on a H&S risk assessment – whilst the risks may now be different, the decision-making process hasn’t changed. As an organisation we therefore urge you to assess the risks in line with the Government guidelines regarding Coronavirus and take action accordingly.

The next few weeks and months will undoubtedly bring with them more uncertainty. Every single person who works in our industry will be affected in some way, but we can, and we must keep talking and work together to ensure that we emerge from this crisis as a strong, unified industry which is able to return to normal at some point in the future. The BCIA is also here to support you and although, like everyone else, we are now working from home, our lines of communication are still open. We have also set up a page on the website with links to a number of websites which have the latest information about the support which is in place for businesses and the current guidance and advice which is being offered by the Government and other bodies within our industry.

Our overriding advice is to stay safe and remember that you are not alone because whatever happens, we are all in this together.

Terry Sharp

President, BCIA