ISSA Advocacy Recap—Executive Order Seeks Stronger OSHA Workplace Safety Guidance

January 22, 2021 ISSA Advocacy Recap—Executive Order Seeks Stronger OSHA Workplace Safety Guidance

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 U.S. President Joe Biden signing an executive order intended to strengthen federal workplace safety guidance, the Thirteenth Antimicrobial Workshop, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granting an emergency exemption for the use of Grignard Pure, and more.

Biden Order Seeks Stronger Workplace Safety Guidance
President Biden signed an executive order Thursday directing federal regulators to issue stronger safety guidance for workplaces operating in the midst of the pandemic, the Washington Post reported. The executive order seeks to reorient worker safety guidelines and enforcement at the U.S. Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). It directs OSHA to update COVID-19 safety recommendations for businesses within the next two weeks, review its enforcement efforts, and study whether an emergency temporary standard, which businesses would have to comply with under the threat of penalties, is necessary. The agency must issue the emergency standard by mid-March, if so. ISSA continues to closely monitor this important issue. The association is generally supportive of one federal COVID-19 workplace standard and looks forward to working with the new administration to safely reopen our economy.

Registration Now Open for Thirteenth Antimicrobial Workshop
Register today to attend a series of workshops addressing antimicrobials, including disinfectants. Every Wednesday from 1:00 p.m.-3:30 p.m. ET beginning March 24 through April 21, the Thirteenth Antimicrobial Workshop will be conducted virtually via Webex. Disinfectants and other antimicrobial pesticides have been front and center during the COVID-19 pandemic. With policy changes around these products accelerating, it is imperative manufacturers stay abreast of the ever-evolving body of laws and regulations that control the manufacture, marketing, and sale of antimicrobials. Stay ahead of the regulatory curve and ensure your success in the marketplace by attending the Thirteenth Antimicrobial Workshop!

EPA Approves Emergency Exemption for Antiviral Air Treatment
The EPA announced approval of an emergency exemption request for use of Grignard Pure as an additional tool in limited-use situations to aid in the fight against COVID-19. The EPA is issuing an emergency exemption for Grignard Pure to be used in certain indoor spaces where social distancing can be challenging. Use of this product does not eliminate the need for critical precautions like mask wearing, social distancing, and ventilation. Always follow U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), state, and local public health guidelines.

OSHA Increases Violation Fees
The U.S. Department of Labor announced employers with workplace violations will be charged more for civil penalty amounts, according to Cleaning & Maintenance Management. The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) will increase penalties based on cost-of-living adjustments for 2021. OSHA’s penalty for serious and other-than-serious violations will increase from US$13,494 per violation to $13,653 per violation. The punishment for willful or repeated violations will increase from $134,937 per violation to $136,532 per violation.

Help ISSA Submit a National Cleaning Week Proclamation for Your State
Did you know March 28 to April 3 is National Cleaning Week? Help ISSA raise public awareness about the value of clean—especially since the cleaning industry has heroically served on the frontlines combatting COVID-19—by submitting a proclamation to designate an official week of cleaning for your state. Each state has an online form that a resident of that state can submit free-of-charge. ISSA has already prepared a template proclamation, but you can help us by submitting your proclamation by February 10. Help us reach our goal of designating an official cleaning week in all 50 states. If you are interested in helping or have questions regarding National Cleaning Week, please contact Stacy Seiden, ISSA’s Government Affairs Coordinator.

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