Agencies Publish Guidance on Protecting Seafood Processing Workers from COVID-19
Guidance issued by OSHA and CDC is intended to help employers in the seafood processing industry protect workers from exposure to SARS-CoV-2 both in onshore facilities and aboard vessels offshore. The joint interim guidance addresses prevention and control of the spread of COVID-19 at seafood processing work sites, where workers are sometimes in close contact with each other throughout shifts lasting more than 16 hours. According to CDC and OSHA, seasonal workers who live in communal housing or in quarters onboard vessels may be at increased risk for infection.  The
CDC/OSHA guidance
urges employers to modify the alignment of workstations so that workers are at least six feet apart in all directions and to limit the number of employees on site by staggering workers across shifts. Other actions employers can take to reduce crowding in the workplace include adding additional stations for clocking in and out or staggering times for workers to clock in and out, and providing temporary break areas and restrooms or staggering workers’ break times. Employers should also screen and monitor workers for coronavirus symptoms and analyze sick leave and incentive program policies to ensure that sick workers stay home and are not penalized for taking sick leave if they have COVID-19.