Gov. Whitmer signs order extending safety measures protecting consumers, employees

Posted at 2:27 PM, May 02, 2020
and last updated 2020-05-02 15:19:14-04

LANSING, Mich. (WXYZ) — Governor Gretchen Whitmer signed Executive Order 2020-71 on Saturday, which extends existing safety measures to protect consumers and employees at grocery stores and pharmacies until May 29.

The order also extends temporary relief from licensing requirements for food sellers and pharmacies.

The executive order extends to May 29 conditions in Executive Order 2020-60, which established the following health and safety guidelines:

  • Customers who can medically tolerate a face covering must wear one when entering a grocery store or pharmacy.
  • Grocery stores and pharmacies must allocate at least two hours per week of shopping time for vulnerable populations.
  • If an employee tests positive for COVID-19, the business must notify other employees without infringing on private health information.
“We must continue protecting the health and safety of both consumers and employees at our grocery stores and pharmacies, which we rely on more than ever during this unprecedented public health crisis,” Governor Whitmer said. “Michigan has begun flattening the COVID-19 curve, but we must not take our progress for granted and continue taking aggressive action to avoid further spread of this deadly disease.”

Food sellers must also continue doing the following:

  • Require checkout employees to wear some form of covering over their nose and mouth.
  • Ensure both employees and customers remain at least 6 feet apart.
  • Close self-serve food stations such as salad bars, and eliminate free samples and tasting stations.
  • Adopt procedures to meet federal environmental cleaning guidelines, including continuously cleaning and disinfecting frequent touchpoints, 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 COVID-19 symptoms.
  • 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.
  • Develop and implement a daily screening program for all staff upon or just prior to reporting to work sites.

Due to increased strain on Michigan’s food service industry, local health departments, and the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the governor has also extended the deadline for certain forms of licensing and registration.

View executive order 2020-71 here.

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