Guidance from the CDC on Continued Employment of Exposed Critical Infrastructure Workers

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has issued guidance to help employers of critical infrastructure employees who must continue to operate address their staffing needs in order to continue essential services when workers performing those services may have been exposed to COVID-19 but are currently asymptomatic.

What Employers Are Affected?

Law enforcement, 911 call centers, fusion centers, hazardous material responders (private and public sectors), janitorial and custodial, health care workers, and others working (including contracted vendors) in food and agriculture, critical manufacturing, informational technology, transportation, energy and government facilities.

Critical infrastructure workers may keep working after “potential exposure” to COVID-19 if they remain asymptomatic and additional precautions are implemented to protect them and the community.

What Is a Potential Exposure?

Household contact with COVID-19 or having close contact (within six feet) with someone with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 within the 48 hour period before an individual becomes symptomatic.

So long as critical employees remain asymptomatic they may continue to work if they and/or their employers follow certain practices before or after their shift:

  • Temperature screening and symptom assessment before shift starts
  • Regular symptom monitoring
  • Wearing masks in workplace for 14 days after exposure (may be issued by employer or, in event of shortages, employers may approve those supplied by employees)
  • Social distance maintenance – keeping six feet from others as work duties permit
  • Regular cleaning and disinfection of all work spaces and common areas

If symptoms develop during the work day, employees should be sent home right away and employers should compile contact information for the prior two days (for all those who came within six feet of the employee.

For more information, please contact Joseph Hofmann or reach out to the Stevens & Lee attorney with whom you regularly work.

This News Alert has been prepared for informational purposes only and should not be construed as, and does not constitute, legal advice on any specific matter. For more information, please see the disclaimer.