New Executive Order Imposes New COVID-19 Safety Protocols on NJ Employers

On October 28, 2020, Governor Phil Murphy signed Executive Order 192 (“EO192”) which requires that employers in the state adhere to safety measures related to the ongoing pandemic.┬áViolations of EO 192 are punishable by fines up to $1,000, imprisonment up to six months, and/or closure of the business at the direction of the Department of Health.

Beginning at 6:00am on November 5, 2020, employers must adhere to the following safety measures:

  • Conduct daily health checks, such as temperature screenings, visual symptom checking, self-assessment checklists, and/or health questionnaires, prior to the beginning of each shift.
    • These screenings must meet the confidentiality requirements of the Americans with Disabilities Act (“ADA”), the New Jersey Law Against Discrimination (“NJLAD”), and guidance issued by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).
  • Require all individuals at the worksite to maintain at least six feet of distance from others to the maximum extent possible.
    • If it is not possible for distance to be maintained, physical barriers should be installed and masks required.
  • Require employees and visitors to wear masks when entering the worksite, subject to certain limited exceptions, consistent with the ADA and NJLAD.
    • Employers are now permitted to request medical documentation from employees seeking an accommodation relating to wearing a mask.
    • Employers must provide masks to employees at no cost to employees.
    • Masks must be worn at all times unless employees are seated and separated by at least six feet, alone in a walled office, or when eating or drinking.
  • Provide approved sanitization materials, including sanitizers and wipes, to employees and visitors at no cost to those individuals.
  • Ensure that employees practice hand hygiene and provide sufficient break time for that purpose.
  • Routinely clean and disinfect all high-touch areas, including door knobs, restrooms, handrails, and other surfaces, in accordance with DOH and CDC guidelines.
  • Exclude sick employees from the workplace, including sending anyone exhibiting symptoms home, and follow requirements of applicable leave laws.
  • Promptly notify employees of any known exposure to COVID-19 at the worksite, consistent with existing confidentiality requirements.

In addition, EO 192 tasks the Department of Labor with establishing an employee complaint procedure and enforcement mechanism, in connection with the Department of Health.

The Department of Labor will be releasing additional guidance, including required notices to employees and training materials, in the coming days. HDRB&B will provide updates as information becomes available.

QUESTIONS? If you have questions or concerns regarding compliance with EO 192, or any other employment law related questions, please contact HDRB&B’s Employment Department Chair Heather Adelman at hadelman@hdrbb.com.

 

ARCHIVES