Situation clarified

The GGF has clarified its position on whether companies should close temporarily or to continue operating safely.

In a statement to members, the GGF also addressed the cash flow crisis and the economic situation ahead.

“There is no doubt that some of the government’s messages for our industry have caused confusion and misinterpretation,” John Agnew, GGF’s managing director, said. “The GGF can’t answer for the government but can only interpret and relay the information as and when we receive it.”

John said that government did not distinguish between essential and inessential workers in construction and is keen for the construction industry to continue, as long as it is safe to do so under Public Health England guidelines and in line with the government’s social distancing guidelines.

For further clarity, the GGF urged employers to do the following: only continue to work if it is safe to do so within the health and safety guidelines as published on the government website; conduct a thorough health and safety risk assessment; and check with insurers that they covered for Public Health and Health and Safety Employer liability

The GGF also published government guidance on how companies can cope with cash flow problems.

“As well as the immediate financial needs, many businesses are also now preparing for the financial issues ahead with the inevitable recession on the horizon and lengthy economic recovery,” John said.

“We are in unprecedented trading landscape and the GGF advice to all companies is to make a plan if you haven’t already done so to help you get through this situation.

“The GGF has internally adjusted its resources and refocused its strategies to ensure members get greater and more specific support. We have published and promoted all of the relevant government financial packages, which have been significant and comprehensive. I have no doubt that the responsible businesses in our industry will use this government support, take help them plan their future accordingly.”