New resources – COVID-19
- Guidelines for reopening non-essential businessesThe document lays out a three-phase reopening strategy. It lists recommendations for each phase and provides examples of how to implement hazard assessments, controls, hygiene practices, physical distancing, identification and isolation of ill employees, and training, among other topics.
- Cloth face coveringsThe FAQ addresses six questions related to face coverings:
- What are the key differences between cloth face coverings, surgical masks, and respirators?
- Are employers required to provide cloth face coverings to workers?
- Should workers wear a cloth face covering while at work, in accordance with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation for all people to do so when in public?
- If workers wear cloth face coverings, do employers still need to ensure social distancing measures in the workplace?
- If I wear a reusable cloth face covering, how should I keep it clean?
- Are surgical masks or cloth face coverings acceptable respiratory protection in the construction industry, when respirators would be needed but are not available because of the COVID-19 pandemic?
- Special website for constructionAimed at reducing COVID-19 exposure among construction workers, the new website includes a table that describes work tasks and their exposure risk level (from “very high” to “lower”). The website also covers engineering and administrative controls, safe work practices, and PPE. In the administrative controls section are screening questions employers should ask before sending workers into “an indoor environment that may be occupied by a homeowner, customer, worker or another occupant,” and recommended actions based on the answers to those questions.
- New industry-specific guidanceAgricultural workers: Interim guidance issued jointly with CDCRetail pharmacy workers safety alert
Stockroom and loading dock workers safety alert
Seafood processing industry workers safety alert
All industry-specific guidances released to date can be found here in English and Spanish.
- Respiratory poster available in 16 languagesPosters that show how to properly wear and remove a respirator are now available in 16 languages.
- CDC fact sheets for airport, airline and transit employers
- – Airline customer service representatives and gate agents
- – Airline catering kitchen staff
- – Airline catering truck drivers and helpers
- – Aircraft maintenance workers
- – Airport baggage and cargo handlers
- – Airport custodial staff
- – Airport passenger assistance workers
- – Airport retail or food service workers
- – Bus transit operators
- – Rail transit operators
- – Transit maintenance workers
- – Transit station workers
- Guidance and resources from state OSHA programs
California becomes first state to adopt standard to protect agricultural employees working at night
A new workplace safety standard to protect agricultural employees who work at night became effective July 1 and will be enforced by Cal/OSHA. It’s designed to protect agricultural workers who harvest, operate vehicles, and do other jobs between sunset and sunrise.
Judge rejects AFL-CIO lawsuit calling for emergency temporary standard on infectious disease
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on June 11 rejected an AFL-CIO lawsuit calling on the Department of Labor and OSHA to issue an emergency temporary standard on infectious diseases.
Virginia is creating COVID-19 emergency workplace standard
The state’s Safety and Health Codes Board voted June 24 to create an emergency temporary standard, which essentially requires employers to follow CDC guidelines or face fines. The proposed standards are expected to go into effect July 15.
DOL Inspector General review of OSHA actions during pandemic
Faced with mounting criticism about the agency’s response to the pandemic, the Department of Labor Office of the Inspector General issued a three-page report on June 17. The report notes responding to the “significant increase” in worker and whistleblower complaints during the COVID-19 pandemic, along with completing inspections and investigations, all in a timely manner, are among the challenges facing OSHA and the Mine Safety and Health Administration, given the limited resources available. OSHA has six months to issue a citation and proposed penalties.
Employers’ injury, illness data is public information
Data from Form 300A is not confidential and there are no restrictions on its dissemination according to a court ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California. The ruling stemmed from a lawsuit made by the nonprofit news organization Center for Investigative Reporting under the Freedom of Information Act, seeking information from OSHA Forms 300A, 300 and 301 forms. The agency no longer collects information from Forms 300 and 301.
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