On Tuesday, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti issued two new public orders in response to COVID-19’s continued growth and effect on essential businesses. Both of these public orders go into effect on Friday, April 10.

The first order contains provisions relating to grocery retail store, drug retail store, and food delivery employees. It mandates:

  • Grocery retail store and drug retail store employers to permit employees to change their schedules if the change is: (1) to provide daycare for the employee’s child; (2) to care for a sick member of the employee’s immediate family or member of its household; or (3) because the employee feels ill, suspects having been exposed to COVID-19, or exhibits a symptom of COVID-19. Food delivery platform businesses must permit an employee to decline an order for the same reasons.
  • Grocery retail store and drug retail store employers to first offer available work to qualified employees if the employee will not incur overtime before hiring a new employee or using a contractor, temporary employee, or staffing agency.

The second order pertains to all employers who are exempt from the Safer At Home Order (e.g., hardware stores, plumbers, laundromats, hotels). It requires:

  • Employees to wear face coverings (furnished at the expense of the employer) while performing their work;
  • Employers to permit employees to wash their hands at least every thirty minutes, and ensure their employees have access to clean bathroom stocked with all necessary cleaning and sanitizing products;
  • Employers to implement social distancing measures; and
  • Customers and visitors of the businesses and organizations to wear face coverings and employers may refuse to service any individual who does not.

These new obligations for Los Angeles employers are some of the strictest in the country. They last until the end of the local emergency and may be extended in the future.