What to expect from Cal/OSHA’s incoming workplace mask proposal

Bay Area

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif. (KRON) — There are just four days until California reopens and residents still don’t have the final workplace mask guidelines from Cal/OSHA.

Employers and workers alike are frustrated because there have been a lot of revisions.

But on Friday, California is expected to get more clarity, with the agency’s official new guidelines.

On June 3, the Cal/OSHA board voted to revise the current standards about mask-wearing and social distancing. It allowed people to take their masks off at work as long as everyone was vaccinated and could show proof of it.

But those changes got a lot of criticism. Business leaders said requiring people to show proof would make for a discriminatory workplace environment.

So on Wednesday night, the board scrapped all changes.

The new proposed set of revisions released by Cal/OSHA on Friday are likely to be more in line with guidance from the CDC and California Health Department guidance.

This is what we know we can expect:

  • Masks will still be required for everyone on public transit, indoors at K-12 schools, as well as childcare and healthcare settings, correctional facilities and in homeless shelters.
  • You can take your mask off everywhere else

What could be different for the workplace: we could see physical distancing and partitions go away, which are currently required.

Cal/OSHA could also just leave it up to businesses, giving them the power to allow people to take off their masks if they can provide proof of their vaccine status, implement vaccine verification measures or just have a flat mask-wearing requirement.

Right now, 54% of Californians are fully vaccinated.

Governor Newsom is also expected to weigh in on the guidance on Friday. The official vote on the proposed changes from Cal/OSHA’s board happens on June 17, however. That’s two days after California reopens.

For now we should all follow the current guidelines of wearing a mask and social distancing.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Stories

Latest News

More News