As employers begin considering return to work strategies, many are wondering whether they should permit or require individuals to wear facemasks at work. It may be surprising to many companies, but the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) has published detailed standards and guidance relating to employees wearing personal protective equipment (“PPE”), which can include simple facemasks. OSHA has also published guidance on dealing with COVID and guidance for employees in the workplace. Moreover, there are big differences between whether an employer mandates employees wear a facemask and whether employees do so voluntarily.
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