Has your business taken the steps necessary to develop a pandemic response plan? If not, by working with an experienced employment law attorney, New York City employers can ensure they are taking the right steps.
Among the most important steps that a business can take is making certain they are updating policies and procedures. As recommendations from the CDC change, businesses should ensure their pandemic response plan and contact tracing plans remains current. Working with a New York employment lawyer will help you to ensure you understand the latest definition of “close contact.” For instance, at one time close contact was defined as an individual who was within six feet of another individual for a total of 15 minutes consecutively. That definition has since changed; however, and now includes the number of cumulative contacts an individual may have had with anyone who is infected.
Furthermore, businesses should make every effort to interview any worker who has tested positive. This interview should be conducted over the phone. The purpose of the interview is to obtain as much information as possible regarding anyone with whom the employee has interacted, the length of time those contacts lasted, and how many times the individual interacted with others. Employers may need to obtain a waiver of confidentiality if the employer needs to disclose any of the personal information to do follow up contract tracing If such a waiver is not provided, the employer may need to rely on additional resources to obtain necessary contact information, such as time clock records.
Whenever possible, employers should ensure their pandemic response plan encourages employees to work remotely and communicate electronically. When employees cannot work from home, the employer can schedule employees to be in the office at different times to limit potential close contact and exposure. All employees should be regularly cautioned to wash their hands, wear masks and maintain a social distance from fellow employees and supervisors.
When searching for an experienced employment law attorney, New York business owners can rely on Egan Law Firm to assist them with their pandemic response plans.
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