We commend the DOLI staff and Safety and Health Codes Board for developing and approving emergency temporary standards in a timely manner in the wake of COVID-19. In particular, we thank DOLI and the Board for prioritizing physical distancing, which is one of the best ways to prevent person to person spread. We also strongly support requiring employers to provide greater transparency and communication when someone in the workplace has been infected with COVID-19, while still complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act and other applicable Virginia laws and regulations. Finally, we appreciate the strong sanitation requirements applying to workplaces and the standards that ensure access to basic sanitation needs for workers.
The proposed Permanent Standard for Infectious Disease Prevention for COVID-19 would maintain important protections for working people and communities in Virginia and provide continuity with the emergency temporary standards, thereby reducing the challenges employers and employees would face from changing regulations.
Thank you for considering these comments from The Commonwealth Institute. We urge you to do what is right to protect Virginia’s workers and adopt the proposed Permanent Standard.
Michael J. Cassidy
President & CEO
The Commonwealth Institute for Fiscal Analysis