ISSA Advocacy Recap—China Pushes Back at U.S. During U.N. Gathering

September 25, 2020 ISSA Advocacy Recap—China Pushes Back at U.S. During U.N. Gathering

Welcome to the ISSA Advocacy Recap, our regular roundup of the latest public policy issues impacting the cleaning industry. This week’s recap touches on China and the U.S. sparring during a United Nations (U.N.) virtual gathering, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)  updating interim guidance for critical infrastructure workers, states considering tax breaks for personal protective equipment (PPE), and more.

China’s Xi Pushes back at Trump during U.N. Virtual Gathering
U.S. President Donald Trump referred to the “fierce battle against the invisible enemy—the China virus,” as he spoke by video to the United Nations General Assembly’s general debate that began this week amid the coronavirus pandemic, CBS News reported. “We must hold accountable the nation which unleashed this plague onto the world: China,” Mr. Trump said. China’s President Xi Jinping’s video message was part conciliation, part push-back. China has “no intention to fight either a Cold War or a hot one with any country,” Xi said, but added, “Burying one’s head in the sand like an ostrich in the face of economic globalization or trying to fight it with Don Quixote’s lance goes against the trend of history.”

CDC Updates Guidance for Critical Infrastructure Workers Exposed to COVID-19
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently updated its interim guidance for Implementing Safety Practices for Critical Infrastructure Workers Who May Have Had Exposure to a Person with Suspected or Confirmed COVID-19. This guidance pertains to critical infrastructure workers, including but not limited to hazardous material responders, janitorial and other custodial staff, as well as workers in critical manufacturing.

Big States Eye Tax Breaks on Face Masks and Hand Sanitizers
Governors and legislatures are examining options for tax relief against purchases of personal protective equipment (PPE) during the COVID-19 pandemic, particularly as employers develop return-to-work strategies. While the approaches differ, several states already have laws and guidance addressing tax breaks for equipment such as face masks, gloves, gowns, respirators, disinfectant wipes, soaps, and hand sanitizers. Active legislatures in Massachusetts, Michigan, and New York are considering bills that expand their PPE tax benefits, but action is expected to escalate next year when most legislatures convene—even as states struggle with virus-induced revenue shortfalls.

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