Cal/OSHA may require masks in California workplaces past June 15

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – While California is counting down to June 15 when restrictions will be lifted statewide, it could be much longer before you can ditch the mask at work.

The California Division of Occupational Safety and Health or CAL/OSHA, is proposing to keep some guidelines in place beyond the date. The state agency that is tasked with regulating safety in workplaces released a proposal to be voted on June 4 this year.

Business leaders including Jerry Sanders with the San Diego Chamber of Commerce question why Cal/OSHA isn’t following the science, saying the proposed plan puts an unnecessary burden on small businesses.

“Based on the fact that the governor said on June 15 all the tiers are gone and it’s back to business as normal, that’s clearly not what CAL/OSHA is telling us,” Sanders said. “Not citing the evidence, they are simply just deciding what they want the guidelines to be. It might be well intentioned but it’s certainly not good for business or those going into businesses and it’s extremely confusing.”

If passed, the plan would keep 6-feet of social distancing and Plexiglass requirements in place until July 31. It also mandates mask wearing for all employees whether vaccinated or not, if the entire office is not fully vaccinated.

Employers would have to supply N95 masks if some are not vaccinated, and documentation of vaccination status would have to be kept on file.

However, when the chamber reached out for clarification on documentation about vaccinations, Sanders said his questions and concerns were never acknowledged.

“That’s the problem. Nobody knows what to do at the moment,” Sanders said. “The governor said one thing, the CDC said another and now CAL/OSHA is saying something completely different. That’s what makes it very confusing.”

The state agency will vote on the proposal on June 4.

Jerry Sanders is encouraging businesses who want to weigh in on the proposed mandates to contact Cal/OSHA here:

Categories: California News, Coronavirus, Health, Local San Diego News, Politics