‘From Lockdown to The New Normal’ - Positive Steps Covid-19 transition Plan

The COVID-19 pandemic presented huge challenges for Positive Steps.

Over two weeks in March, we moved quickly, efficiently and strategically to remote working. This was achieved while maintaining client support, partnership communication, business continuity and employee well-being.

We are now planning for the transition back into the new, post Covid-19 ways of working, ensuring staff and clients safety whilst maintaining service delivery quality, quantity and achieving positive outcomes for our clients.

Interestingly, our staff and clients have reported that remote working has many benefits so not everything will be going back to the old, old-ways of working, we will learn from our experiences during lockdown.

However, there are areas of our work where remote working isn’t enough, these are predominantly face to face service delivery, where clients don’t have good access to ICT, where confidentiality is required and for the most vulnerable of our clients.

This plan provides guidelines on how we will return to a new-normal way of working; however, these dates will be constantly under review and may change dependent upon local or national guidelines.


• Stage 1 - Moving out of full lockdown (1st June 20 – 1st September 20)
• Stage 2 - Working alongside Covid-19 (1st June 20 – 1st June 21)
• Stage 3 - The New Normal (1st June 20 - onwards)

Note that all stages start on 1st June 20, this is to recognise that these stages will not be discrete from one another, and there will be significant ‘blurring’ between timescales and phases, and that multiple phases are likely to be operational at once.


We will:
• not put our staff or clients at unnecessary risk
• provide adequate and appropriate PPE
• remain true to our company vision and values
• learn from and be informed by experiences during lockdown
• continue working from home for everyone who can, as long as is advised
• uphold advised social distancing measures wherever we work
• be informed by local and national guidance
• work with our partners to develop strategy and deliver operational services
• prioritise safeguarding and public protection work
• risk assess any face to face work before it is undertaken


Detailed timeframe - Stage 1

Date by/on

Activity undertaken

Monday 1st June 2020

All staff will continue working from home


Remote working wherever possible where this can be effective.

Face-to-Face contact will increase for vulnerable and at risk clients.  (doorstep visits/ individual contacts at social distance etc)

PPE must be used or any contact where social distancing cannot be guaranteed.

Monday 29th June 2020

Sexual Health Clinics open in Medtia Place – for appointments only

Monday 6th July 2020

Appointment only services restart in Medtia Place (all service areas) Social distancing measures will be in place.

Monday 3rd August 2020

Front of house fully opens including drop-in services alongside appointments.  Social distancing measures will be in place.

Limited staff return to First Floor Offices, planned to ensure safe practice and where social distancing can be achieved.

(front line staff for appointments and Duty Officer)

The Senior Management Team will each work from the office base for 1-day a week on a rota.

The Service Leads will each work from the office base for 1-day a week on a rota.

Partners return to their offices in Medtia Place

Tuesday 1st September 2020

Meeting Rooms open


Medtia Place

You will see from the table above the timeframe we expect to resume normal working practice. It is important to note that this will be a gradual process over the next 12 months closely following local and national guidance and ensuring health and safety measures are in place.

The plan for return will be needs-based and each step forward will be risk assessed and signed off by the Senior Management Team before activity commences. During Stage 1 all staff that can work from home will continue to do so. The focus for Medtia Place will be on providing a safe environment to deliver our targeted work with our most vulnerable clients. We have included in our plans to ensure management availability when the building is open.

Staff that are based in other areas

The guiding principles are the same wherever staff are based. Direct delivery in any venue will require risk assessment and agreement by Senior Management before the work commences. This includes direct delivery work from any venue including, for example, schools, children centres, health centres or other partner premises.

Office based activity in Rochdale and Tameside offices will follow the same timetable, however, as Tameside is a partnership venue it will have to be considered alongside the plans for Tameside LA staff to resume office based activity.

Priority Service delivery

All service delivery will follow social distancing guidelines and use PPE as instructed and provided by Positive Steps. Details will be regularly updated, and the current guidelines will be followed. There will be a management presence for specified times as agreed to support service delivery.

Sexual health clinics will open first, this will be an appointment only service, followed by wider delivery from across our services on an appointment only basis, this will be for:

• One to One appointments where risk and/or safeguarding issues are a concern; for people unable to access appropriate ICT in order to engage fully; where confidentiality is required and can’t be facilitated via digital or home based appointments; where it’s important for accurate assessment to be undertaken
• Small group activity where risk and/or safeguarding issues are a concern; where confidentiality is required and can’t be facilitated via digital or home based appointments; where it’s important for accurate assessment to see the client and/or associated children


Front of house opening

From Monday 3rd August the centre will open for advertised hours for both appointments and drop-in support. The reception will open, and adequate staff will be working in the building to respond to ‘drop-in’ clients and support the appointment based activity. This will be agreed with Operational Mangers, Service Leads and overseen and authorised by Senior Management. All other staff will continue to work from home in order to safely operate distancing measures in the building.

Service Leads and Directors will return to office based working on a one-day-a-week basis in order to ensure a Senior Management presence in the building and monitor that safe distancing measures are in place during this time.

From September 1st Onwards

We will be looking to open meeting rooms and allow for more office based activity, numbers will be limited, and priority will always be for service delivery staff.

This is potentially a rapidly changing situation so detailed plans will continue to be prepared and updated with more information provided nearer the time.


Steph Bolshaw
Chief Executive