NYS Department of Health continues to provide guidance for businesses and facilities preparing to reopen or return to standard business operations. As additional updates become available, we will work with the health department, environmental scientists and industrial hygienists to ensure our cleaning and disinfection meets or exceeds all state health department recommendations in addition to the CDC guidelines which we already meet or exceed.
While the CDC does provide guidance for COVID-19 in workplaces, another important source is OSHA which includes regulations for COVID-19 in the workplace under two clauses and standards.
First, under The General Duty Clause, Section 5(a)(1) of the Occupational Safety and Health (OSH) Act of 1970, 29 USC 654(a)(1), which requires employers to furnish to each worker “employment and a place of employment, which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm.”
Also, under OSHA’s Bloodborne Pathogens standard (29 CFR 1910.1030) which applies to occupational exposure to human blood and other potentially infectious materials. Where respirators are required, employers will also have to comply with OSHA’s Respiratory Protection Standard (29 CFR 1910.134).
These standards provide clear requirements of companies to provide safe, healthy environments for their employees.
It is not certain yet but New York State may enact language such as Minnesota, i.e.
Prior to loosening restrictions for a given setting, businesses must:
Create, share, and implement a COVID-19 Preparedness Plan that sets out the actions they are taking to ensure:
- social distancing
- worker hygiene
- facility cleaning and disinfection necessary to keep workers safe
- Engage in health screening of employees and ensure that sick employees stay home
- Continue to work from home whenever possible
Other state have released requirements as well such as:
(1) In addition to maintaining pre-existing cleaning protocols established in the facility, clean and disinfect high-touch areas routinely in accordance with CDC guidelines, in spaces that are accessible to customers, tenants, or other individuals.
(2) Maintain pre-existing cleaning protocols established in the facility for all other areas of the building.
The White House has released their 3-phase approach to reopening America.
Some of the guidelines include which facilities should be allowed to open at the specified stage, guidelines for employers and business operators and the use and disinfection of common areas within facilities.
As many people are wondering what facilities will be open during each phase? Or when will restaurants open, gyms open and so on.
These guidelines assume all businesses reopening follow social distancing guidelines and may be required to adhere to additional restrictions such as limiting the number of patrons.
The following facilities will be opened during phase one:
Offices / General Business (return in phases if possible)
The following facilities will be opened during phase two:
Schools and organized youth activities
The following facilities will be opened during phase three:
Senior Living visitation resumes
All business types (possibly with restrictions)
With our testing, cleaning and training protocols we are able to meet and or exceed any state requirements and have your business ready to open at the earliest possible opportunity.