Due to the recent coronavirus outbreak, the Ontario Federation of Agriculture (OFA) is joining the many businesses, government offices and institutions that are standing united in a global shared battle against COVID-19 by implementing a mandatory work from home strategy for all employees.
OFA is taking the necessary precautions to ensure the health and safety of our employees, directors, families and members is a top priority. Effective today, OFA’s head office in Guelph, Ontario will be closed until further notice.
However, OFA business operations will not be interrupted. OFA will maintain regular business hours (8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.) during the closure and will continue to serve our 38,000 farm family members across the province. We are working across the organization to ensure all employees are well-equipped for working from home in order to continue to provide a high-level of service and support to our membership. We intend to make a seamless transition to a work-from-home solution and do not expect to experience any service interruptions related to member requests, issues or inquiries.
By implementing this strategy, we hope to be able to do our part to limit the spread of COVID-19, reduce the risk of exposure and adhere to recommendations provided by Ontario’s chief medical officer of health. International experience demonstrates that social distancing is the only effective method to control the spread of the virus, and it is in the best interests of our employees, our families and our communities.
Ontario’s current health environment is changing rapidly and it has forced the organization to be fluid and flexible. As the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve, we will monitor its progress closely and will provide further updates when necessary.
In addition, the Canadian Federation of Agriculture (CFA) president Mary Robinson released an official statement on Monday, March 16 updating the agriculture and food industry on actions CFA is taking to help minimize the impact on farmers of the COVID-19 pandemic. Read the full release here: https://www.cfa-fca.ca/2020/03/16/message-from-cfa-president-covid-19/.
For more information about managing COVID-19 in the agriculture industry, the risk to the work environment and employee health and safety, read the special briefing provided by the Canadian Agricultural Human Resources Council (CAHRC). It is available at: https://mailchi.mp/2b324298ddf5/emerging-labour-issues-special-update-for-cahrc-partners-fall-5175869?e=7413fc0574.
If you have any questions, comments or concerns regarding OFA business and operations, please contact us at 1-800-668-3276. Thank you to all of our OFA members for your patience, support and understanding during this challenging time.