More Loosened Restrictions and More Workplace Safeguards: Executive Orders 2020-114 and 2020-115

By Rebekah Page-Gourley posted 06-05-2020 15:08


Continuing the trend of loosening the “Stay Home, Stay Safe” restrictions, Governor Whitmer issued Mich Exec Order No 2020-115 on June 5, 2020. The new order applies to individuals and businesses in Regions 6 and 8 effective June 10, 2020, and represents a shift of that region to Stage 5 (“Containing”). Mich Exec Order No 2020-115 also rescinds subsection 12(c) of Mich Exec Order No 2020-110 (restricting operation of facilities offering nonessential personal care services) effective June 15, 2020, although Mich Exec Order No 2020-110 otherwise remains in effect for Regions 1-5 and 7. Among other things, Mich Exec Order No 2020-115:

  • States that work that can be performed remotely “should” be performed remotely. This is a notable change from Mich Exec Order No 2020-110, which affirmatively requires remote work where possible.
  • Allows for gatherings among persons not part of the same household, to the extent that (1) people can maintain six feet of distance, (2) indoor gatherings do not exceed 50 people, and (3) outdoor gatherings do not exceed 250 people. This does not apply to “incidental gathering of persons in a shared space, including an airport, bus station, factory floor, restaurant, shopping mall, public pool, or workplace.”
  • Allows indoor arcades, bowling alleys, theaters, climbing facilities, sports arenas, convention centers, and other similar facilities to operate under certain specific distancing and capacity guidelines.
  • Allows outdoor concert spaces, racetracks, sports arenas, stadiums, and other similar facilities to operate under certain specific distancing and capacity guidelines.
  • Allows public swimming pools to be open subject to guidance from the Department of Health and Human Services, subject to capacity limits for outdoor (50 percent) and indoor (25 percent) pools.
  • Maintains closure of residential, travel, and troop camps.

Governor Whitmer also issued Mich Exec Order No 2020-114 outlining worker safety procedures on June 5, 2020. The order includes most of the provisions previously outlined in Mich Exec Order No 2020-97, which is rescinded. Among other things, the new order additionally:

  • Requires that employers immediately notify the public health department if an employee has a confirmed case of COVID-19. The prior requirements to notify co-workers, contractors, or suppliers who may have come into contact with the employee within 24 hours remain.
  • Requires that an employer allow employees with a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 to return to work only if they are no longer infectious according to current CDC guidance and are released from quarantine or isolation by the local public health department.
  • Removes the restriction on research laboratories from suspending in-person visits from visiting scholars.
  • Adds libraries and museums to the list of businesses required to comply with the workplace safeguards outlined for retail stores open for in-store sales. It also exempts Regions 6 and 8 from the capacity guidelines and dedicated shopping time requirements for retail stores, libraries, and museums.
  • Adds a requirement that offices “use virtual meetings whenever possible.”
  • Requires restaurant staff (as well as hosts and servers) to wear face coverings in the dining area.
  • Provides specific safeguards for businesses or operations providing in-home services, like cleaners, repair persons, painters, etc. These include but are not limited to daily health screenings, accurate employment records, asking about COVID-19 infections in the home, limiting the number of employees entering the home, and wearing gloves when practical.
  • Provides specific requirements for businesses or operations providing barbering, cosmetology services, body art, tanning, massage, or similar services. These include but are not limited to restrictions on entry to customers and caregivers/minor dependents of customers, use of barriers between work stations, limiting waiting occupancy, removing all self-service refreshments and nonessential shared items like magazines, and requiring employees and customers to wear a face covering except when the treatment requires its removal.
  • Provides specific requirements for sports and entertainment facilities, including but not limited to encouraging or requiring patrons to wear face coverings, limiting occupancy, establishing safe exit procedures, and using specific disinfection protocols.
  • Provides specific requirements for gyms, fitness centers, and like facilities, including but not limited to separating workout stations enabling 10 feet of distance between individuals (or 6 feet with barriers), reducing class sizes, providing cleaning products and regularly disinfecting, and closing steam rooms and saunas.