Gov. Whitmer signs executive order for safety measures to protect consumers and employees

Posted at 12:59 PM, Apr 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-04-26 13:12:24-04

LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer has signed an executive order that imposes safety measures to protect consumers and employees from further exposure to COVID-19.

The new order announced today says grocery stores and pharmacies must also set aside at minimum two hours each week for the most vulnerable populations to shop.

Additionally, the order requires that if an employee at a store tests positive for COVID-19, other employees must be notified without infringing on the personal health information of the infected employee.

“While Michiganders fight this virus, we must continue to take aggressive action to reduce exposure and prevent a second spike in cases,” Whitmer said. “This is not the time to slow our efforts. We must continue to be smart.

"By establishing these guidelines, we can protect Michigan families and our front-line workers. When we come together, we can slow the spread of this virus and save lives.”

Executive Order 2020-60, which is effective immediately and continues through May 22, also provides temporary relief by suspending certain licensing requirements and regulations for food service industries, the governor's office said.

The order, signed April 24, outlines what food establishments and pharmacies must do to reduce possible exposure of the coronavirus. These are some of them:

  • Require checkout employees to wear some form of covering over their nose and mouth, such as a homemade mask, scarf, bandana or handkerchief
  • Ensure that both employees and customers remain at least six feet apart to the maximum extent possible
  • Close self-serve prepared food stations, such as salad bars, and eliminate free samples and tasting stations
  • Adopt procedures to meet the environmental cleaning guidelines set by the CDC, including by cleaning and disinfecting frequent touchpoints throughout the day, such as point of sale terminals at registers, shopping carts and shopping baskets
  • Prohibit employees who are sick from reporting to work and send employees home if they display symptoms of COVID-19
  • Accommodate employees who fall within a vulnerable population by providing lower-exposure work assignments or giving them the option to take an unpaid leave of absence with a return date coinciding with the end of the states of emergency and disaster
  • Develop and implement a daily screening program, as described herein, for all staff upon or just prior to reporting to work sites

Read the full executive order here.