Dear GM Team Member,

We hope that you and your family have remained healthy and safe during this unprecedented time. This letter is to inform you that we are planning to resume operations at GM St. Catharines in the near future. Not all areas/shifts will be starting up at the same time; your Group Leader will be contacting you with your scheduled return-to-work date and shift.

During our return-to-work, we must be mindful now, more than ever, that we rely on each other for our collective safety. There are a lot of changes listed below and every one of them is designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission in the workplace. Ultimately though, reducing the risk of transmission relies on individual actions. It takes both patience and combined commitment to help ensure everyone’s safety.

Before Returning to Work

Self-assess your current health condition by answering the following three questions. If you answer YES to any of these questions, please stay home and notify your Group Leader of your intended absence. In addition, please contact the GM Canada Medical Central Call Line at 519-425-3105 (9:00am – 5:00pm EST) for further instruction. If you cannot get through to speak to a nurse right away and your situation is not urgent or you are calling outside business hours, please leave a message and a call back number and the nurse will follow up with you.

  1. Have you travelled outside of Canada in the (14) days prior to your return to work date?
  2. Have you had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, someone who has recently travelled outside of Canada, or someone who is sick with new respiratory symptoms, in the (14) days prior to your return to work date? Close Contact is defined as (a) a face-to-face conversation for 15 minutes or (b) being in the same room for 2 hours
  3. Do you currently have a fever, chills, cough, difficulty breathing, headache, sore throat, difficulty swallowing, runny stuffy congested nose, muscle/joint aches, lost sense of taste and smell, diarrhea, abdominal cramps or nausea, fatigue, feeling delirious or distracted, pink eye?

Additionally, please stay home and notify your Group Leader of your intended absence if you are not COVID-19 symptom-free as per your Provincial Public Health Department Self-Assessment Guidelines:

Workplace Safety Requirements in the Time of COVID-19

As always, maintaining a safe work environment for employees is our number one priority. In addition to following all government guidelines, we have implemented the following protections for your safe return to work – please plan accordingly:

Shift hours: 

  • Shift hours will be staggered in order to accommodate the safe entry and exit of all. Prior to your return to work, your Group Leader will contact you to advise you of your new shift hours

Entry to the plant will be through the West Clock House only, and everyone will be required to do the following:

  • Sanitize their hands upon entry
  • Answer the three self – assessment questions listed above
  • Visual posters will be used to constantly remind of social distancing and safety awareness protocols
  • Immediately put on the ASTM Level1 surgical mask issued uponarrival (more information below)
  • Have their temperature assessed using a thermal scanner (any issues identified by your temperature assessment will require a visit to Medical for further evaluation)

Exit from the plant will be through the East Clock House only:

Employees that require special accommodations due to documented medical limitations must notify their supervisor in advance of their return

Masks are mandatory:

  • Everyone is expected to wear their mask at all times throughout their entire shift (except while eating or drinking)
  • Your mask is protecting others from you, and everyone else’s mask is protecting you from them o You are required to wear your mask until you get into your vehicle to leave for the day

Meals, breaks and lunches:

The cafeteria will remain closed for the time being so employees will be required to bring their own lunches to work each day

  • Employees should bring meals that don’t require refrigeration or heating as fridges, microwaves and/or toaster ovens will be unavailable until further notice
  • Employees are welcome to bring small, personal coolers if desired Breakandlunchschedulesandlocationshavebeenmodifiedtoreducecontactbetweenpeople
  • It’s imperative that we all remain more than 2 metres apart at breaks and lunches as you must remove your mask to eat and drink

Smoking huts and The Boot Shop are temporarily closed until further notice

Physical distancing:

  • Implementation of social distancing strategies, where practical, in the work area
  • Team Room access will be limited or restricted
  • Locker room access – specifically shower access – will be available, but limited
  • Team Members who normally rotate jobs multiple times per shift will be required to remain on the same job for their entire shift •

Cleaning and sanitization:

Every employee will take part in cleaning and sanitization and will receive training on the products being used and how to use them

  • Janitorial staff will clean common areas. The time of the most recent sanitation will be posted in each area
  • Team Leaders will clean Team Rooms and Oasis stations. The time of the most recent sanitation will be posted in each area
  • Team Members will be given time at the start of their shift to clean individual workstations and mobile equipment

Increased cleaning protocols at employee entrances and exits

We have put the above measures in place to help ensure your personal safety and are looking forward to safely resuming activities here at GM St. Catharines.

Please continue to check the GM St. Catharines Information Hotline (1-877-868-3895) and plant website ( for more updates.

NEW! GM St. Catharines now has a Facebook Group for active employees to receive timely business updates, exclusive stories, recognition, plant highlights and more. To join the group, head to Facebook and search “GM St. Catharines Propulsion Plant” or visit directly.

If you have questions about the return-to-work process please contact your Group Leader. Stay safe,

Carolyne Watts                        Tim McKinnon
Plant Director                           Plant Chairperson

Click here for printable PDF document  St. Catharines RTW Employee Communication – FINAL