To the Employers of Klickitat County- The Department of Emergency Management in Unified Command with The Public Health Department wants to THANK YOU for continuing to do the right things. We know the past few months have been trying for all business owners and each of you has made significant changes to adhere to the new best practices and guidelines as they were released. As we transition into additional businesses activity, we want to ensure everyone has the information needed to keep our community healthy.
Although we are beginning to phase in the reopening of our county and Washington state, the COVID-19 virus is still a very serious disease with life-threatening implications. Until we have a successful vaccine, an effective treatment, and an isolation plan, we must maintain some level of community interventions to suppress the spread of COVID-19 throughout all phases. We do this for ourselves, our loved ones, and for the overall health and prosperity of our community. The Washington Department of Labor and Industries (L&I) recently hired additional inspectors to assist businesses in understanding and following the new L&I rules.
Best Practices for Employers During All Phases
- As of June 8th all employees must wear a mask unless working alone (details on L&I website).
- Maintain six-foot physical distancing standards and adopt other mitigation measures when physical distancing is not possible for a particular job task (physical barriers, masks, etc).
- Provide adequate sanitation and hygiene facilities for your employees, vendors, and customers.
- Provide employee access to handwashing facilities with soap and water.
- Disinfect the business regularly and increase the frequency of cleanings focusing especially on high touch surfaces. Follow the CDC cleaning guidelines.
- Identify and acquire the personal protective equipment (PPE) needed for your employees such as masks, face coverings, and gloves.
- Create a COVID-19 workplace policy that addresses sick employees, restrictions for COVID-19 positive employees, and possibly exposed employees. Be sure to include business protocols for the screening of employees, changes to the facility such as non-cash transactions, and any other measures that are needed to keep your staff and customers safe and healthy.
- Communicate with your employees about the signs, symptoms, and risk factors associated with COVID-19 and how to prevent its spread.
- Keep up to date with changes to guidelines and recent events through the resources provided by the state. Do your research and be flexible with making changes to stay current.
Always stick to reliable information sources such as Washington State, Department of Health and the CDC. For information, resources, statistics, facts, and direct links to reliable sources, the Washington State Coronavirus webpage will be the best place to start your search.
Reopening Guidance for Businesses-
Workplace Safety Guidance for Employers- https://coronavirus.wa.gov/business-workers/workplace-safety-guidance
Department of Labor and Industries-
Department of Labor and Industries- Emergency Order for Business Fines- https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/WADLI/bulletins/28d7e64
Department of Commerce Business Newsletter 06/10/2020- http://klickitatcounty.org/DocumentCenter/View/8635/Dept-of-Commerce_Business-and-Worker-News letter_06102020-PDF
Phased “Safe Start” Approach to Reopening- https://www.governor.wa.gov/sites/default/files/SafeStartWA_4May20_1pm.pdf
“New Normal” Employers Checklist-
Retail Operational Plan and Checklist- https://files.constantcontact.com/08defd39001/60a7d313-a541-4026-a078-e912150afc5b.pdf