On Friday, November 6, 2020, the Oregon Occupational Safety and Health Division (Oregon OSHA) issued its final version of the COVID-19 Temporary Standards. These new rules are to become effective on November 16, 2020, and will remain in effect until May 4, 2021. With these rules, Oregon will become only the third state in the country to have adopted specific requirements related to COVID-19. The specific text of the rules can be found here. The new rules will apply to all employers in the state, with additional requirements for “exceptional risk” workplaces.

Not surprisingly, the new rules include mandates for physical distancing, face masks/covering, and sanitation. Many employers have likely already taken steps to protect their employees in this regard and only minor tweaks may be necessary to come into compliance. However, the new rules also include requirements for conducting an exposure risk assessment, developing an infection control plan, and providing training to employees, among other things. There are also deadlines by which some of the requirements must be complied with. For requirements without a specific deadline, employers should be prepared to come into compliance by the time these rules go into effect on November 16, 2020.

Additionally, Oregon OSHA has provided various documents that they have prepared to assist employers in complying with the new rules. Those documents can be found on the Oregon OSHA COVID-19 page. Employers should also be mindful of the appendices to the rules, which include industry-specific requirements that may apply to your business.

If, after review, you have any questions about the COVID-19 Temporary Standards, please contact Josh Dennis at jdennis@schwabe.com or 503-796-2985, or Amanda Gamblin at agamblin@schwabe.com or 503-796-2903.

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