Tumwater, WA – Washington state COVID-19 emergency orders put in place by Gov. Jay Inslee during the pandemic ended today.
Still, coronavirus remains a workplace hazard and employers must continue taking precautions to prevent the spread of the virus.
Among the general safety requirements and guidance still in place:
- Every employer must assess their specific workplace for COVID-19 hazards and take steps to prevent employee exposure based on that assessment.
- Workers who have tested positive for COVID-19 should be kept out of the workplace for at least five days per Washington State Department of Health guidance.
- Healthcare workers and others providing care to or working near someone known or suspected to have COVID-19 should wear appropriate, fit-tested, and NIOSH-approved respirators.
Complete Washington State Department of Labor & Industries’ (L&I) requirements and guidance are available online.
Apart from L&I’s general requirements, rules in place under the state Health Emergency Labor Standards Act (HELSA) also remain in effect as long as there’s a national COVID state of emergency. The law prevents employers from retaliating against high-risk employees who seek accommodation from exposure.
HELSA also requires employers to notify their workers when an exposure to COVID-19 happens, and to report outbreaks to L&I at any company with more than than 50 workers. There’s additional information about HELSA on L&I’s website.
The Washington State Secretary of Health’s Face Covering Order remains in place for health care and long-term care settings, as well as correctional and jail facilities except in areas where community transmission is low. Some local health jurisdictions may also require masks.
Source: WA L&I