Business Briefcase

Gov. Doug Ducey’s news conference last week was dominated by discussion about masks, which also have implications for businesses.

Did you know that Ducey has been requiring businesses to “provide and require employees to wear masks when possible” for more than a month?

Last week, Ducey stressed that guidelines for businesses to reopen from May would begin to be enforced—though it was not clear who would be doing the enforcing, or how.

“Arizona businesses also need to do their part,” Ducey said. “As we’ve reopened, there have been good actors. And I’ve said several times, there have been outliers. By and large, Arizona businesses have been terrific, but there have been more than an outlier here and there.

“Serious changes are needed to be made, and there will be enforcement around those changes,” the governor said.

His previous reopening order includes “Requirements for Businesses” to limit and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 by:

• Promoting healthy hygiene practices.

Intensifying cleaning, disinfection and ventilation practices.

• Monitoring for sickness.

• Ensuring physical distancing.

• Requiring face coverings when physical distancing is not feasible.

• Providing necessary protective equipment.

• Allowing for and encouraging teleworking where feasible.

• Limiting the congregation of groups of no more than 10 persons when feasible and in relation to the size of the location.

When businesses were permitted to reopen to the public last month, many focused on regulations for restaurants.

However, Ducey’s order includes dozens of restrictions for all businesses, including:

• Provide and require employees to wear masks when possible.

• Unless the service provided does not allow for physical distancing, businesses shall implement and enforce physical distancing requirements of at least 6 feet between employees and/or customers.

• Maintain physical distancing of at least 6 feet in between tables, chairs or desks.

• Operate with reduced occupancy and capacity based on the size of the business location to accommodate 6 feet of physical distancing.

• Close or limit access to congregate settings such as lunch rooms, employee lounges or break rooms.

• Implement policies and encourage teleworking where feasible.

• Consider operating by appointment only to manage occupancy levels.

• Implement symptom screening for employees prior to the start of their shift.

• Employers should not require a COVID-19 test result in order for employees to return to work and should consider waiving any requirement for a note from a health care provider.

• Ensure hand sanitizer is available at or adjacent to entrances to the facility, restrooms and in employee work areas.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, such as keyboards, phones, handrails and door knobs.

For a complete list and more information, visit azgovernor.gov.