Some Alberta employers are asking staff to break quarantine and return to work

Jan 20 2021, 11:03 pm

Alberta’s top doctor has heard reports of employers asking their employees to come back to work before their COVID-19 quarantine is up, a practice she hopes to quash.

Some employees who have been identified as a close contact of someone with COVID-19 and told to self-isolate have been asked by their bosses to take a COVID-19 test and come back to work if they receive a negative result, Dr. Deena Hinshaw said Wednesday.

“Not only is this the wrong thing to do to protect each other, it’s also illegal,” she said.

She reminded Albertans that a test is just a snapshot of whether a person is infected at a particular moment in time. After coming into contact with a known case, a person could test negative three days later but get sick seven days later.

Quarantine and self-isolation rules are there for a reason, and everyone must follow them, Hinshaw added.

She did not say where the reports came from or what industries the employees worked in.

Alberta reported 669 new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday, and Hinshaw has said the province must proceed with caution after lifting some outdoor gathering restrictions on Monday.


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