Thursday, March 26, 2020
Web Desk

Coronavirus: safety guidelines for Pakistani journalists

The Association of Electronic Media Editors and News Directors has issued the directives for media persons

Web Desk

The Association of Electronic Media Editors and News Directors (AEMEND) has issued safety guidelines for the media persons covering the COVID-19.

The instructions apply to reporters/ correspondents, cameramen, technicians, satellite engineers, staff related to assignment and DSNG operations outdoor assistants, and any other staff performing duties outside, said the AEMEND statement.

Here are the instructions:

Leaving office for outdoor assignment:

1. Wear mask before leaving office.

2. Wash or sanitize hands before leaving office.

3. All DSNGs and assignment vehicles should be sanitized after each assignment (by disinfectant spray on seats, steering, dashboard, door handle from both side etc.)

4. If you are traveling using your own vehicle you should sanitize after every use by using a spray of Dettol and water mixture. Using small spray bottle makes it more cost effective.

5. Before start of journey, ensure that you have sanitizers and gloves available in vehicle or with you.

6. Try to travel to your destination with no or minimum physical contact with any other person or colleague.

Reaching assignment location:

7. Wear gloves before disembarking the vehicle.

8. Ensure you are wearing gloves and face mask properly before you touch any equipment or enter the assignment premises.

9. Enter assignment premises with utmost care and keep a safe distance from others and furniture and fixture of the premises.

Working at assignment location:

10. Use face masks and gloves all the time when you are working outdoor on any assignment.

11. Come in contact of persons, equipment and fixture at assignment location only if this is very important and unavoidable i.e., fixing collar mic, lifting purchased good etc.

12. Try to stay as minimum as possible at assignment, do not stay after completing assignment specially to socialize i.e., leave as soon as a video beeper ends and you pack up equipment.

13. Try not to eat anything on assignment location, specially served by others.

Leaving assignment location:

14. Dispose off gloves in Dustbin, don’t throw carelessly, before heading back.

15. Check all the equipment is placed on appropriate locations. If you are given disinfectant please apply on equipment before storing in DSNG or assignment vehicle.

16. Try to maintain distance if possible with your colleague traveling with you.

Arriving and entering office after assignment:

17. Before entering office dispose off your mask in nearest dustbin. Please avoid throwing it carelessly.

18. Immediately after entering office premises, wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds if you are wearing a short sleeve wash hands up till elbow.

19. If washing is not possible please use sanitizers placed at different locations.

20. Store equipment and other items at respective locations and wash your hands again or sanitize.

Other important points

1. Try to use your own vehicle for outdoor use and keep disinfecting the same by mixture of Dettol and water.

1. Keep giving feedback to administration and your departmental heads/supervisors in case of shortage of supplies like mask, soap, sanitizers etc.

2. Report, if any of your colleague do not follow the above despite your reminders.

3. Washing hands and keeping safe distance are the key measures to avoid coronavirus.

4. All paper and plastic material should be handled while wearing gloves and masks as per the protocol of disinfection of coronavirus.

Here are safety protocol/measures for all journalists and media workers working within office premises:

Arriving at office:

1. Try to travel in your own personal conveyance with no or minimum physical contact with any other person.

2. Use face masks and gloves when you are travelling from your home to office.

3. Properly dispose off these before entering office premises in dustbin don’t throw them carelessly.

4. While entering into office premises you shall cooperate with the security and health scanning staff with respect to your health screening, which is utmost important for a SAFE work environment.

5. After entering office premises wash your hands with soap, if it’s not possible use sanitizer placed by Administration Department at different locations.

Working in office:

1. Try to wear masks within office premises as well; you can also contact Administration Department if you are facing difficulty in acquiring masks from open market.

2. If you are using a common/shared desktop system used by other team members as well, make sure that you are using disposable gloves to protect yourself and your colleagues.

3. Frequently wash your hands with water and soap for 20 second, in locations where water and soap is not available, you can use sanitizer.

4. Try to avoid face to face meetings as much as possible, conferencing through video link, using voice call or extension are more advisable these days.

5. Also do not forget to wash your hands with soap or sanitizer, after attending meetings or visiting the work station/office of your colleagues.

6. Try to use your own cup and glass for tea and water during office hours.

7. Please restrict yourself to your work station; and avoid making unnecessary visit to irrelevant floors and buildings.

What to do

1. In case, if you identify or suspect any of your colleague or their family members suffering from the COVID 19 symptoms, make sure that you bring the same into the notice of the HR Medical Facilitation Help Desk (MFD). Do not discuss the same with any other employee as it would promote gossip and misinformation which can result in chaos and confusion.

2. Employees assigned to work from office are responsible to avoid unnecessary mobility and do the following;

a. Avoid inviting guests at office and home.

b. Avoid visiting public places like parks, restaurants, shopping malls etc.

c. Avoid visiting relatives, family and friends who are suspected of Corona infection.

d. Observe health of your loved ones closely.

e. Regularly observe health condition of your domestic servants like maids, drivers etc. at home.

f. In case of self-illness of staff or anyone from his / her immediate family and colleague, staff shall immediately inform the MFD.

The AEMEND statement said that it is the duty of the organisations to provide their personnel with the requisite material, even saying that is the right medical equipment is not present then the assignment should be cancelled.