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News Release

ICYMI: U.S. Department of Labor Acts to Help American Workers and Employers During the Coronavirus Pandemic

WASHINGTON, DC – Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor took a range of actions to aid American workers and employers as our nation combats the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Reopening America’s Economy:

  • Secretary Scalia Joins Vice President Pence for a Visit to Michigan – Vice President Pence thanked Secretary Scalia and remarked at Casadei Steel Inc., “You know, we’ve all passed through very challenging times over the last several months. But I’m proud to report to you, after all that we’ve been through, standing here today because of the sacrifices the American people have made, because of the incredible dedication of our healthcare workers, because of the way that American businesses stepped up, every state in this country is now opened up again, and three-quarters of America’s small businesses are going back to work.”
  • U.S. Secretary of Labor Scalia Highlights Safely Reopening Economy during Visit to Pennsylvania –U.S. Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia traveled to Beaver Springs, Pennsylvania, where he joined Rep. Fred Keller (PA-12) for a tour of Conestoga Wood Specialties and a meeting with employees and leadership to discuss workplace safety and reopening the economy. Earlier in the day, Secretary Scalia joined Small Business Administrator Jovita Carranza and Rep. Scott Perry (PA-10) in Camp Hill for a roundtable discussion with women small business owners on safely reopening the economy.

Keeping America’s Workplaces Safe and Healthy:

  • U.S. Department of Labor Issues OSHA Guidance As Non-Essential Businesses Reopen and Employees Return to Work – OSHA has issued guidance to assist employers reopening non-essential businesses and their employees returning to work during the evolving coronavirus pandemic. The guidance supplements the U.S. Department of Labor and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ previously developed Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 and the White House’s Guidelines for Opening up America Again. The guidelines provide general principles for updating restrictions originally put in place to slow the spread of the coronavirus. During each phase of the reopening process, employers should continue to focus on strategies for basic hygiene, social distancing, identification and isolation of sick employees, workplace controls and flexibilities, and employee training.

Helping Unemployed Americans:

Defending Workers’ Rights to Paid Leave and Wages Earned:

  • The U.S. Department of Labor offered two webinars in Spanish for agricultural employers and employees in California about the paid sick and expanded family and medical leave benefits available under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

During the coronavirus pandemic, the Department of Labor is focused on protecting the safety and health of American workers, assisting our state partners as they deliver traditional unemployment and expanded unemployment benefits under the CARES Act, ensuring Americans know their rights to new paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave, providing guidance and assistance to employers, and carrying out the mission of the Department.

The mission of the Department of Labor is to foster, promote and develop the welfare of the wage earners, job seekers and retirees of the United States; improve working conditions; advance opportunities for profitable employment; and assure work-related benefits and rights.

Department of Labor
June 21, 2020
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Media Contact: Emily Weeks
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