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California Issues New COVID-19 Employer Playbook for a Safe Reopening 

by Sandra Rappaport

Published: July, 2020

Submission: August, 2020


On July 24, 2020, the California Department of Public Health issued a new guidance document for all employers within California, entitled “COVID-19 Employer Playbook For a Safe Reopening.” The stated purpose of the 33-page Playbook is to provide “guidance for employers to help them plan and prepare for reopening their business and to support a safe, clean environment for workers and customers,” and includes guidance on:

  • How to Open Safely
  • What to do if there is a Case of COVID-19 in the Workplace
  • Enforcement and Compliance
  • Worker Education

The Playbook includes a number of cross references and links to other guidance and is not intended to be exhaustive. Accordingly, employers should consider the guidance in the Playbook along with requirements set forth in county health orders, safety and health-related regulatory requirements issued by Cal/OSHA, as well as the industry-specific guidance published previously (and regularly updated) by the CDPH. Guidance on reopening changes rapidly, so employers should be careful always to review the latest developments from both state and local authorities.

Regardless, all employers in California should familiarize themselves with the steps outlined in the Playbook as part of their efforts to keep workplaces safe. It provides a useful framework of existing legal requirements and tools for employers who are reopening during COVID-19.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   


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