Cal/OSHA Adopts More Stringent COVID-19 Protections for Workers
Regulations ensure workers receive more protection

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Cal/OSHA has adopted emergency rules to ensure all California workers receive more protection from the potentially devastating impacts of COVID-19. These standards will benefit educators and staff in our schools, community colleges, universities and all employees in California.

The Cal/OSHA Emergency Temporary Standard still contains provisions that allow “exclusion pay” for workers who are unable to work because they were exposed to COVID-19 at the worksite. Exclusion pay means the employer continues to pay you even if you must be “excluded” from the worksite. 

  • The original Emergency Temporary Standard took effect November 30, 2020, and created mandatory and enforceable requirements for employers to reduce transmission of COVID-19 in workplaces.
  • The standards were updated on June 17, 2021.

June 17, 2021 — Revisions to the Emergency Temporary Standards

Following the June 17  vote by the Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board to adopt the revised COVID-19 Prevention Emergency Temporary Standards, Governor Newsom signed an executive order to allow the revisions to take effect immediately on June 17, 2021. 

The revised regulations reflect the state’s latest COVID-19 public health guidance. The updates include changes to face coverings and physical distancing requirements. More information about the revised Emergency Temporary Standards can be found on the Cal/OSHA website at the links below.

November 18, 2020 – Emergency Temporary Standards  (Original)

The Cal/OSHA Standards Board voted unanimously on November 18, 2020, to adopt emergency rules to strengthen COVID-19 protections for all California workers. The Dept. of Industrial Relations website includes information about the original standard. (The standard currently in effect was revised on June 17, 2021. )