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  • COVID-19 and the Workplace: Protecting Yourself at Work

    With COVID-19 continuing to spread in our community, it is now more important than ever that community members remain proactive in helping slow the spread of COVID-19. Workers should take the following steps to protect themselves at work:

    • Follow the policies and procedures of the employer related to illness, cleaning and disinfecting, and work meetings and travel.
    • Stay home if sick, except to get medical care.
    • Practice social distancing by keeping at least 6 feet away from fellow coworkers, customers, and visitors when possible, even when in or around
    • break rooms, water coolers and/or non-work areas.
    • Wear cloth face coverings, especially when social distancing is not possible. Cloth face coverings are intended to protect other people—not the wearer.
    • Workers should inform their supervisor if they or their colleagues develop symptoms at work. No one with COVID-19 symptoms should be present at the workplace.
    • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing noses, coughing, or sneezing, or having been in a public place. 
      • Use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
      • DO NOT use any hand sanitizer that contains methyl alcohol due to its high toxicity.
    • Avoid touching eyes, nose, and mouth.
    • To the extent possible, avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public places – elevator buttons, door handles, handrails (to the safest extent possible), etc.
    • Where possible, avoid direct physical contact such as shaking hands with people.
    • Minimize handling cash, credit cards, and mobile or electronic devices when possible.
    • Avoid all non-essential travel.
    Sick workers should follow CDC-recommended steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Workers with COVID-19 who have stayed home can stop home isolation and return to work when they have met one of the sets of criteria found here.

    Workers who use public transportation, ride sharing, taxis or carpooling to travel to and from work should protect themselves. Always remember to use face coverings, practice social distancing where applicable, and wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after using such transportation.

    Additional information can be found in the State of California's COVID-19 Employer Playbook.