COVID Marshals

The COVID Marshal is an important role that makes sure workplaces are COVIDSafe at all times, protecting workers and members of the community.

Changes to restrictions in metropolitan Melbourne and regional Victoria

The Victorian Government has announced the further easing of COVID-19 restrictions from 11:59pm Thursday 17 June.

For a detailed overview of the changes, see the Table of Restrictions (PDF) at the bottom of the Statement from the Acting Premier

The Victorian Government has announced that every Victorian business must use the Victorian Government QR Code Service to check-in their workers, customers and visitors, with some limited exemptions.

For customer-facing venues and workplaces, such as hospitality venues and retailers, it is already mandatory to use the Victorian Government QR Code Service.

For businesses that have not previously been mandated to use the Victorian Government QR Code Service prior to Thursday 11:59pm 10 June 2021 an enforcement amnesty is in place until Thursday 11:59pm 1 July 2021. 

The Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions is undertaking consultation with businesses and industry to ensure business feedback is part of the implementation process.

Industry restart guidelines

Last updated: 24 May 2021

Information sheet

COVID Marshals

Last updated: 8 June 2021

The COVID Marshal is an important role that keeps workplaces COVIDSafe at all times.

COVID Marshals are responsible for monitoring a site’s compliance with its COVIDSafe Plan and additional industry-specific obligations. They play a vital role in supporting workers to follow COVIDSafe principles, and look for ways to continually improve a business’s COVIDSafe Plan, including entry screening, physical distancing, personal protective equipment (PPE), workplace bubbles, hygiene, cleaning and record-keeping requirements

Which industries are required to have COVID Marshals?

COVID Marshals are mandatory for:

  • abattoirs and meat processing facilities
  • poultry processing facilities
  • seafood processing facilities
  • supermarket distribution facilities (metropolitan Melbourne only)
  • chilled distribution facilities for perishable food (metropolitan Melbourne only)
  • warehousing and distribution centres (metropolitan Melbourne only)
  • ports of entry (airports and maritime)
  • hospitals
  • hotel quarantine facilities. 

COVID Marshals are recommended for:

  • distribution centres (where they are not mandatory)
  • warehousing (regional Victoria)
  • horticulture operations using seasonal workers for seasonal horticultural work
  • care facilities
  • commercial cleaning services
  • commercial passenger vehicle services
  • supermarket distribution facilities (regional Victoria)
  • chilled distribution facilities for perishable food (regional Victoria)
  • Australian air transport operators.

What are employers’ requirements in settings where COVID Marshals are mandatory?

Employers must:

  • appoint one or more workers as a COVID Marshal who is responsible for monitoring compliance with the work premise’s COVIDSafe Plan, including additional industry specific obligations
  • ensure the COVID Marshal(s) successfully completes training in accordance with Department of Health guidance
  • have the COVID Marshal(s) at the work premises whenever workers are on-site (guidance for small, medium and large workplaces is provided below)
  • keep records of duty rosters for the COVID Marshal(s).

The employer is responsible for ensuring COVIDSafe obligations are met.

What are the Department of Health training requirements for COVID Marshals?

COVID Marshals must complete basic infection control awareness training. You can find examples of this training at the Department of Health COVID-19 Infection Control Training page or the Skills Victoria website

We recommend COVID Marshals are also trained in First Aid (Level 2).

Who appoints the COVID Marshal?

Employers must appoint COVID Marshals and support them with the necessary training and resources.

Employers must consult with health and safety representatives, their workforce and worker representatives about the proposed appointment and role of COVID Marshals.

Employers should appoint multiple COVID Marshals if the nature, workforce demographics and layout of the work premises requires it. See additional guidance below.

Ideally, COVID Marshals should reflect the diversity of the workplace.

There must be a COVID Marshal at the premises whenever workers are on-site (excluding the retail premises of a supermarket). If there are small numbers on a shift, then a worker can do the COVID Marshal role (following their training) and perform their normal duties.
Employers need to allow sufficient time in a workday for COVID Marshal duties. Each workplace should assess how this will work, considering layout, workforce bubbles, and workforce demographics. As a guide it is recommended that in:

  • small workplaces/venues of fewer than 40 workers and/or patrons or discrete bubbles within a workplace the COVID Marshal completes these duties alongside their normal duties
  • medium-sized workplaces/venues of 40-100 workers and/or patrons at least one COVID Marshal is dedicated to COVID Marshal functions at least 50 per cent of the time
  • large workplaces/venues, where more than 100 workers and/or patrons are on site at any time, the equivalent of at least one full-time staff member should be dedicated to the COVID Marshal role so key elements of the COVIDSafe Plan (including additional industry-specific obligations) are checked and monitored throughout shifts.

Employers may need to appoint multiple COVID Marshals or train additional people as ‘deputies’ to fill the role during an absence or where there are distinct work areas and job roles.

Employers should consider the needs of their business and their employees to ensure the number of marshals and time available for marshal duties is adequate. Employers should consider maintaining the integrity of workplace bubbles and may implement a system similar to the fire-warden structure (whereby a chief warden who has time dedicated to the role and then sub-wardens who perform the role while performing their usual duties).

What functions do COVID Marshals perform?

COVID Marshals monitor compliance with COVIDSafe Plans, including additional industry-specific obligations. and provide prompt advice about failings to employers and health and safety representatives. They also encourage and coach workers on safe working practices.
This is to help keep the workplace safe and open, protecting employees, customers and their families.
For detailed information on these functions and how they can work in practice, see:

COVID Marshals must wear clothing or an identifying badge that makes their role clear to co-workers.

COVID Marshals must not face discrimination or any adverse action for discharging their duties.

A COVID Marshal is not:

  • an occupational health and safety expert, unless they have appropriate qualifications and experience
  • a health and safety representative
  • undertaking a disciplinary or punitive role. COVID Marshals should focus on educating and encouraging co-workers to comply with COVIDSafe Plans including additional industry-specific obligations. Non-compliance should be dealt with by management in the usual way.

What records must employers keep?

Employers must keep records of the names of all appointed COVID Marshals and duty rosters for COVID Marshals.

As far as practical, they should also keep a record of:

  • the process to appoint each COVID Marshal, including consultation with health and safety representative(s) and workers
  • the instruction and training each COVID Marshal received after their appointment.

Reviewed 18 June 2021

Coronavirus Victoria

Coronavirus (COVID-19) business support

The Business Victoria hotline provides information on restrictions and support to help your workplace plan and respond to coronavirus (COVID-19).

Call Business Victoria on 13 22 15

Contact Business Victoria

24/7 Coronavirus Hotline

If you suspect you may have COVID-19 call the dedicated hotline – open 24 hours, 7 days.

Please keep Triple Zero (000) for emergencies only.

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