By Benjamin D. BriggsAdam R. Young, and Craig B. Simonsen

Seyfarth Synopsis: A new report from the National Safety Council (NSC), State of the Response: Employer Actions to Address the Pandemic, provides an overview of how employers have been responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The NSC survey sought to understand which COVID-19-related safety practices were being implemented in different organizations across different industries and operations types. The NSC created a list of 23 pandemic-related safety precautions that were recommended through its SAFER effort and included many best practices recommended by the CDC and other public health organizations. The safety practices included cleaning and hygiene-related precautions, testing and tracing precautions, and human resources and communications tools to prevent the spread of the coronavirus in the workplace.  Based on the NSC survey of hundreds of employers, organizations spent $5,208 per employee on various safety practices – from making remote work possible to providing PPE and hand sanitizer. The NSC also provided an infographic for a summary of its findings.

According to the NSC survey, participants indicated whether they had finished implementing, started to implement, planned to implement or did not consider implementing each of the 23 COVID-19 related safety practices. Overall, the most commonly implemented safety practices were “making hand sanitizers available throughout facilities; requiring mandatory face masks, shields, and/or other PPE; and requiring workers to clean and sanitize workstations before and after use (see Report Figure 7 (shown here below) for list of top 10 implemented practices).”

The least implemented COVID-19-related safety practices included increasing pay for frontline workers and instilling coronavirus testing either at home or at the worksite.

For more information on this or any related topic, please contact the authors, your Seyfarth attorney, or any member of the Workplace Safety and Health (OSHA/MSHA) Team.