Following the July 24th release of their guidance entitled “COVID-19 Employer Playbook For a Safe Reopening,” the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has updated a 32-page document to help California employers plan and prepare for reopening their businesses and to support a safe, clean environment for workers and customers.

Summary of the Guidance

The main focus of the update is to help employers reopen their businesses safely. According to the CDPH, business operation decisions should be based on both the level of disease transmission in the community and a company’s readiness to protect the safety and health of its workers and customers.  As such, the agency advises that all employers should collaborate with workers and unions to effectively communicate important COVID-19 information and must implement (and update as necessary) a plan that:

  • Is specific to their workplace;
  • Identifies all areas and job tasks with potential exposures to COVID-19;
  • Includes control measures to eliminate or reduce such exposures;
  • Maintains healthy business operations;
  • Maintains a healthy work environment;
  • Provides effective training for workers; and
  • Encourages workers to give input into an effective workplace plan.

Other subjects covered in the playbook include:

  • How to manage an outbreak;
  • When workers can return to work;
  • Regulations and guidance for COVID-19 reporting and disclosures;
  • Protected leaves;
  • Unemployment benefits; and
  • Workers’ Compensation


Even though the CDPH’s “COVID-19 Employer Playbook For a Safe Reopening” was created for California-based employers, it is still a good resource for employers in any state to gain a high-level understanding of some of the issues that they might be facing during the COVID-19 pandemic. The global COVID-19 pandemic is still an evolving situation, with new local, state, and federal orders being issued on a regular basis.  Because of this, all employers in all states should be keeping up to date with these regulations that might affect their business operations.