Coronavirus Orders and Workplace Protocols: What MLA is Monitoring as of Nov. 18

November 18, 2020

Michigan Department of Health and Human Services

Emergency Order under MCL 333.2253 – Gatherings and Face Mask Order

On Sunday, November 15, Governor Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) issued a new emergency order that tightens restrictions on indoor social gatherings and group activities for three weeks in an effort to curb transmission of COVID-19.

Of critical note to Libraries: Libraries and Museums will be able to remain open with 30% capacity. The epidemic order also references the MiOSHA rules of October 14 which also restricts in-person work unless doing that work remotely is impossible. The epidemic order will go into effect on Wednesday, November 18 at 12:01am for 3 weeks until December 8.

Other restrictions include:

  • Besides high schools, colleges and universities also must move to distance learning;
  • Dine-in/on-premises service of food and drinks indoors is prohibited;
  • Theaters, moving theaters, stadiums, arcades, bowling centers, ice skating rinks and indoor water parks are closed;
  • Group fitness classes are prohibited;
  • Indoor gatherings remain limited to 10 people but now there is a limit of two households;
  • Outdoor gatherings are limited to 25 people; and
  • Funerals are limited to 25 people.

Learn more:,9753,7-406-98178_98455-545136--,00.html

State of Michigan

Michigan Safe Start Map and Dashboard

The State of Michigan has created a dashboard, which is available online that provides data regarding the situation in your local region and state. This dashboard uses the MERC regions. The map of the state shows a Risk Level in shades of purple and the range includes six levels from the lowest level of “Low” up to the highest level of “E”. On November 12 the MI Safe Start dashboard showed the entire state of Michigan at the highest risk level of “E”.

Learn more:

Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity

Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) General Rules Emergency Rules

Effective October 14, 2020, the legislature has declared that “all employees shall be provided safe and healthful work environments free of recognized hazards.” Employers must provide employees with “a place of employment that is free from recognized hazards that are causing, or are likely to cause, death or serious physical harm to the employee.

Employers are required to create a policy prohibiting in-person work for employees to the extent that their work activities can feasibly be completed remotely. Employers shall evaluate routine and reasonably anticipated tasks and procedures and categorize into low, medium, high and very high exposure. All employers must develop, implement, and distribute/publish a written COVID-19 preparedness and response plan, consistent with the CDC recommendations (including handwashing, face coverings, six-foot distance, signage, etc.) Employers shall outline basic infection prevention measures for all employees and conduct health surveillance on a daily basis (including record keeping.) Employers shall provide all employees with PPE necessary to do their jobs and shall provide training to employees on the use of PPE and infection control practices

Specific to Libraries – Rule 9 Section 3: Retail stores that are open for in-store sales, as well as libraries and museums, must:

(a)  Create communications material for customers (e.g., signs or pamphlets) to inform them of changes to store practices and to explain the precautions the store is taking to prevent infection.
(b)  Require patrons to wear a face covering (unless the patron is unable medically to tolerate a face covering).
(c)  Post signs at store entrances instructing customers to wear a face covering when inside the store.
(d)  Post signs at store entrances informing customers not to enter if they are or have recently been sick.
(e)  Design spaces and store activities in a manner that encourages employees and customers to maintain 6 feet of distance from one another.
(f)  Install physical barriers at check out or other service points that require close interaction, including plexiglass barriers, tape markers, or tables.
(g)  Establish an enhanced cleaning and sanitizing protocol for high-touch areas like restrooms, credit-card machines, keypads, counters, shopping carts, and other surfaces.]

Learn more:

Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration (MIOSHA) Guidance on Remote Work

The responsibility to maintain a safe workplace is paramount, and strongly suggests that employers should allow their employees to work from home if possible. In order to minimize the presence of individuals gathered in work settings where COVID-19 may spread, employers should only permit in-person work when attendance is strictly required to perform job duties.

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Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA)

Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) developed this COVID-19 planning guidance based on traditional infection prevention and industrial hygiene practices. It focuses on the need for employers to implement engineering, administrative, and work practice controls and personal protective equipment (PPE), as well as considerations for doing so. This guidance is intended for planning purposes. Employers and workers should use this planning guidance to help identify risk levels in workplace settings and to determine any appropriate control measures to implement. Additional guidance may be needed as COVID-19 outbreak conditions change, including as new information about the virus, its transmission, and impacts, becomes available.

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Center for Disease Control Guidance (CDC)

As COVID-19 continues to spread across the country and the world, we all must remain vigilant. The changes we have had to make to routines and daily life are extremely hard, but these changes are even more important now and in the future. We must stop the spread of this new and dangerous virus. The more steps you and your family can take to prevent the spread of COVID-19, the safer you will be.  Along with other guidance, follow these three important rules to slow the spread:

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Uniting the Michigan Library Community

MLA is proud to partner with organizations serving the library community.

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