December 6, 2021
Now that the holiday season is here, some Postal Service teams may be planning festive events that involve employees gathering to share food and drinks in a plant or delivery unit.
While there is no evidence that COVID-19 is transmitted by food or drinks, close contact between individuals does increase the risk of spreading the virus.
Sharing utensils and congregating around food poses other hazards, as well.
These Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) tips to help protect against the spread of COVID-19 should be considered for any workplace celebrations:
• Instead of a potluck, buffet or family-style meal, use and provide individual, prepackaged boxes or bags.
• Avoid sharing food, drinks and utensils.
• Provide physical guides, such as tape on floors or sidewalks and signs on walls, to ensure that individuals maintain social distancing (at least 6 feet apart).
• Use disposable dishes and utensils. If disposable items are not feasible or desirable, ensure that all nondisposable items are handled with gloves and washed with dish soap and hot water or in a dishwasher.
• Individuals should wash their hands after removing the gloves or after directly handling used food service items.
The CDC website has additional guidelines for holiday celebrations.
As a reminder: Employees must wear face coverings consistent with current postal policy, if social distancing cannot be maintained at all times at such gatherings.