How Jobs for Nature (JFN) projects operate under the COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic light system).

Jobs for Nature projects under COVID-19 Protection Framework

The COVID-19 Protection Framework (traffic light system) protects Aotearoa New Zealand from COVID-19, while allowing vaccinated people more freedoms.

JFN projects can operate under traffic light settings and should follow public health advice including:

  • wearing face masks
  • social distancing, and
  • good hygiene practices.

There are further key points at each traffic light setting.

Get financial support

There are likely to be many people who will need to self-isolate at home over the coming months if they have COVID-19 or they have come into contact with the virus.

COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme

If a staff member must isolate and are unable to do JFN work, you should seek COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme from the Ministry of Social Development (MSD).

The scheme must be used to pay your isolating workers’ salary. If it does not cover their full salary, you can top it up using JFN funds to pay their full wage. If you are not eligible for the Leave Support Scheme or have challenges accessing it, raise this with your Delivery Manager.

It's important that you let your Delivery Manager know if you’re claiming a subsidy for any of your staff members and whether you are using JFN funding to top up wages. We’ll also ask you about this in reporting.    

Talk to your Delivery Manager if you think using JFN funding top up the subsidy will have a significant impact on meeting the deliverables in your funding agreement.

Working remotely

Some work will be able to continue remotely, even if staff are required to isolate. In this case, you should continue to pay them using JFN funds.

We encourage you to proactively consider if some work for your project, including training, can be done remotely. By accessing these subsidies, it means the JFN funding can go towards the conservation outcomes it’s intended for.


It’s likely project work will be disrupted if you have staff isolating or you experience supply chain issues. Work with your Delivery Manager who can help to adapt your milestones. Assess COVID-19 risks as part of your health and safety plan.

While JFN project partners and their employees or contractors are not required to be vaccinated, your health and safety plan must be reviewed.

You are required to identify COVID-19 risks in your health and safety plans and have robust controls to mitigate these. Health and safety plans should include the organisation’s individual vaccination policy.

You must be fully vaccinated to visit or work at a DOC office until 4 May 2022. 


If you have any questions about working requirements under the COVID-19 traffic lights, contact your delivery manager.

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