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Social Distancing in the Workplace

June 22, 2020

By Heather Nezich, courtesy of SBAM Approved Partner ASE

OSHA recently released guidelines for implementing social distancing in the workplace.  Employees must maintain six feet distance between themselves at all times – sometimes easier said than done.

The following steps can make it easier for employees to follow social distancing guidelines in the workplace:

  • Encourage workers to stay home if they are sick.
  • Isolate any worker who begins to exhibit symptoms until they can either go home or leave to seek medical care.
  • Establish flexible worksites (e.g., telecommuting) and flexible work hours (e.g., staggered shifts), if feasible.
  • In workplaces where customers are present, mark six-foot distances with floor tape in areas where lines form, use drive-through windows or curbside pickup, and limit the number of customers allowed at one time.
  • Stagger breaks and rearrange seating in common break areas to maintain physical distance between workers.
  • Move or reposition workstations to create more distance and install plexiglass partitions.
  • Encourage workers to bring any safety and health concerns to the employers’ attention.

These tips can be easily posted in your workplace by downloading the OSHA poster here.

Paycor has created a more detailed list ideal for office spaces:

  1. Complete tasks remotely whenever you can.  And keep in mind, the Governor’s EO does still state that employees who can work remotely should continue to do so.
  2. Eliminate physical meetings.  Use video conferencing, phone, or email instead.
  3. Avoid meetings with clients. Move them online whenever possible.
  4. Cancel or postpone all business travel.
  5. Avoid handshakes or sharing elevators.

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