OSHA Issues Guidance on Mitigating, Preventing Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace

Rules word on side of notebook

The guidance contains a few new and updated recommendations that employers should note.

February 22, 2021
Amy R. Patton & Blake A. Dillion - Payne & Fears

On January 29, 2021, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) issued new employer guidance on mitigating and preventing the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace. This guidance is intended to help employers and workers outside the healthcare setting to identify risks of being exposed to and of contracting COVID-19 and to determine any appropriate control measures to implement. While this guidance is largely duplicative of prior OSHA and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (“CDC”) guidance and recommendations, it contains a few new and updated recommendations that employers should note:

Face Coverings
OSHA recognizes that face coverings, either cloth face coverings or surgical masks, are simple barriers that help prevent the spread of COVID-19, and are beneficial for the wearer as well as others. OSHA recommends that employers should provide all workers with face coverings, unless their work task requires a respirator. These face coverings should be provided at no cost and should be made of at least two layers of tightly woven breathable fabric, and should not have exhalation valves or vents. Employers should also require any other individuals at the workplace (i.e., visitors, customers, non-employees) to wear a face covering unless they are under the age of 2 or are actively consuming food or beverages on site. Wearing a face covering does not eliminate the need for physical distancing of at least six feet apart.

Employers must discuss the possibility of “reasonable accommodations” for any workers who are unable to wear or have difficulty wearing certain types of face coverings due to a disability. In workplaces with employees who are deaf or have hearing deficits, employers should consider acquiring masks with clear coverings over the mouth.

Reprinted courtesy of Amy R. Patton, Payne & Fears and Blake A. Dillion, Payne & Fears

Ms. Patton may be contacted at arp@paynefears.com
Mr. Dillion may be contacted at bad@paynefears.com


Arrange No Cost Consultation


Construction Defect Journal is aggregated from a variety of news sources, article submissions, contributors, and information from industry professionals.

No content on this site should be construed as legal advice or expert opinion. By viewing this site you agree to be bound by its terms and conditions


Copyright 2021 - Construction Defect Journal – All Rights Reserved