COVID-19: NC Unemployment Insurance Information The fastest and most efficient way to apply for unemployment benefits is to create an online account and file online at des.nc.gov. updated 4/9/20 . Mailing Address 1101 Mail Service Center Raleigh, NC 27699-1101. ‘He deserved better.’, More than 90% of NC’s counties are showing heavy community spread of COVID, Restaurant breaks COVID rules, slapped with restraining order, Washington officials say, Durham martial arts gym’s mask-less party draws online anger and a letter from city, Antarctica – the last continent without COVID – suddenly has 36 cases, officials say, Why experts say getting a COVID test before Christmas with family isn’t enough. The U.S. Department of Labor has issued a $6 million federal grant to North Carolina to support job training and temporary employment opportunities for those laid off as a result of COVID-19. Workers with increased exposure risk include those involved in: Healthcare (including pre-hospital and medical transport workers, healthcare providers, long-term care workers, pharmacies, and support staff), Postmortem care (including coroners, medical examiners and funeral directors), Laboratories (clinical and research laboratory personnel), Border protection and tranportation security, Environmental services (i.e., janitorial). The Order does not change the reduced capacity limits for certain businesses that have already been outlined in Executive Order 169. Berry is retiring in January, to be succeeded by Josh Dobson, a Republican elected to the position on Nov. 3. Raleigh, NC 27601, Mailing Address Connect to local news for just $1 a month for 3 months. Contact the OSH Complaint Desk by phone at 919-779-8560 or 1-800-625-2267 (1-800-NC LABOR) (in-state only), or through the online form on our website. Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a disease that was identified in late 2019 and was declared a pandemic on March 11. Sophie Kasakove is a Report for America Corps member covering the economic impacts of the coronavirus. Thanks to “lack of enforceable COVID-19 workplace requirements,” the petition said, workers throughout North Carolina “are not safe at work.”, In her written response, Berry repeatedly denied the importance of workplaces as vectors of viral spread. The letter was sent to worker advocacy groups that had demanded the department take stronger action to stop the spread of COVID-19 in workplaces. North Carolina Department of Labor FAQs Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) FAQs; Centers for Disease Control (CDC) FAQs; NC Government - Phase 3 FAQs The advocacy groups that received the letter are considering filing a complaint with OSHA asserting that the state has failed to uphold its responsibilities. In addition, the following OSH pre-recorded webinars can assist with employee training: personal protective equipment for construction with a focus on COVID-19, personal protective equipment for general industry with a focus on COVID-19, respiratory protection with a focus on COVID-19,  N95 filtering facepiece respirator and COVID-19, respiratory protection, bloodborne pathogens, and hazard communication. 1-800-NC-LABOR NC Dept of Labor’s COVID-19 Page . Industry Guide 50—OSHA Agriculture Standards Requiring Programs, Inspections, Procedures, Records and/or Training provides requirements for standards related to COVID-19. … Maintain a physical distance of at least 6 feet from other people. Roy Cooper said he hoped the department would be more proactive under Dobson. While OSHA has not implemented new regulations in response to the pandemic, it has issued citations: 244 since the start of the pandemic, with penalties totaling over $3.3 million. Berry said such action is outside her department’s authority and downplayed the risk posed by the virus to workers. Clermont Ripley, an attorney and co-director of the Workers’ Rights Project, said some […] NC Department of Labor’s COVID-19 response In her written response, Berry repeatedly denied the importance of workplaces as vectors of viral spread. Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, $15,615 penalty for a meat-processing plant, North Carolina middle school teacher and coach dies from COVID-19 complications, All counties in Charlotte region are in COVID red zone, new NC data show, ‘We’re not disposable’: Agricultural workers demand COVID-19 protections from state, After Cooper backs down on executive order, NC worker advocates push for protection, As COVID-19 spread in NC meatpacking plants, workplace complaints piled up, Son’s obituary for his father shares Raleigh family’s COVID grief. The seven coronaviruses that infect humans, and which can be divided into two sets, are: MERS-CoV (beta coronavirus): causes MERS (Middle East Respiratory Syndrome)—2012, SARS-CoV (beta coronavirus): causes SARS (severe acute respiratory syndrome)—2003 (China), 2019 nCoV (or SARS-CoV-2): novel coronavirus that causes coronavirus disease 2019, or COVID-19. NC Government COVID-19 Information Hub. She argued that most instances of exposure would likely not fall under her office’s jurisdiction, and said it “may be very difficult if not impossible to prove that the illness is work-related.”. Interim COVID-19 Recommendations for Food Processing Facilities Letter from Commissioner Troxler to Law Enforcement agencies regarding ag group personnel A notice of work authorization document has been sent to commodity groups and trade organizations, recognizing agricultural employees. The consultative services bureau provides free and confidential onsite consultation regarding worksite safety and health hazards. The gamma and delta coronaviruses do not cause known human disease. N.C. Department of Labor Physical Address 4 West Edenton St. Raleigh, NC 27601. This presentation was created by the N.C. Department of Labor for safety and health training. For the third-straight day Wednesday, North Carolina reached a new excessive for patients hospitalized with COVID-19, additional stressing the state’s medical . I look forward to talking with incoming Commissioner Dobson about things that we might be able to do.”. “This is really a dereliction of duty.”, Asked for response to the criticism of Berry’s letter, DOL spokesperson Dolores Quesenberry wrote, “The letter from Commissioner Berry speaks for itself.”. Less than two weeks later, the governor’s office decided not to issue the order. “You can’t lose a member of a school family, the community without acknowledging it and dealing with the emotions of the kids who are in his classes,” said April Jones Lee. Sign up for our newsletter and get updates on the coronavirus in North Carolina and across the nation. “It is just another example of how these workers who we now call ‘essential’ and recognize how important they are, are still being treated as disposable and as a cost of doing business.”, During the nine months that COVID-19 has spread across the state, the Department of Labor has not adopted or amended any health and safety standards specific to COVID-19. Advocates are also hopeful that incoming Labor Commissioner Dobson, currently a state representative, will be more proactive. “While I am … Question 2. In addition, Oregon OSHA also has online training on COVID-19. The Which OSHA Standards Apply webpage can also help identify other standards that may be applicable to this topic. The department has instead issued voluntary guidance and conducted educational site visits to employers who opt in, efforts Berry argued in the letter would be “hurt by the adoption of rules that would require NCDOL to become more of a regulatory entity.”. Berry’s letter came in response to an October petition for DOL rulemaking by a half dozen worker advocacy organizations. The education, training and technical assistance bureau provides free online safety and health training and outreach services (i.e., speaker’s bureau requests, safety booths) upon request. On March 10, 2020, Governor Cooper declared a State of Emergency to coordinate response and protective actions for the State of North Carolina based on the public health emergency posed by COVID-19: thus, the State Communicable Disease Emergency Policy is now active, and under ongoing review as the situation changes. Worker advocates say the letter is consistent with the deregulatory approach of Berry, a Republican, who has been elected to five consecutive terms as commissioner. These numbers do not reflect cases not associated with a cluster. Avoid close contact with people that are sick. There have been 280 reported clusters at workplaces, with 6,636 associated cases and 30 associated deaths through the end of November, according to the state health department, including 4,047 cases associated with meat processing plants alone. News & Observer reporters Aaron Sanchez-Guerra and Zachery Eanes contributed to this story. Safety and health programs relative to 2019 nCoV include COVID-19 preparedness and response plan for low and medium risk employers,  bloodborne pathogens exposure control plan, hazard communication program, personal protective hazard assessment and respiratory protection program. North Carolina Labor Commissioner Cherie Berry recently ruled that COVID-19 isn’t a workplace hazard, so no rules are needed to protect workers. Personal Protective Equipment. But the DOL, the Department of Agriculture, and the Department of Health and Human Services pushed back, The News & Observer previously reported. She wrote that most of those deaths were people over the age of 65, who are generally “no longer active in the workforce.”. NC DHHS COVID-19 Page. Your right to protect yourself from COVID-19; Su derecho a protegerse de la COVID-19 (Courtesy NC Justice Center) NC Department of Labor FAQ's Regarding COVID-19; Preguntas frecuentes (FAQs) relacionadas con el Coronavirus (COVID-19) (Courtesy NC Department of Labor) NC Department of Labor Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) She previously reported on the environment, big industry and development as a freelance reporter in New Orleans. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Contact information for all Farmworker Health Agencies in North Carolina. But according to the Occupational Safety and Health Act of 1970, those states are obligated to develop standards “at least as effective in providing safe and healthful employment” as those established by OSHA. The North Carolina Department of Commerce offers this page of resources below to help you navigate common issues you may encounter, as you help your company weather the unusual circumstances COVID-19 has brought to our state. NCDHHS: 8,000-Plus COVID-19 Cases Reported in Single Day Dec. 18, 2020 - 12:38 p.m. Gov. By failing to enact workplace protections, advocates say NCDOL isn’t just abdicating its responsibilities to workers, but may be violating federal law. Your continued support makes local journalism like this possible. Berry noted that on Oct. 26, as an example, less than 1.5% of people who had contracted COVID-19 in North Carolina died from the virus. “[Commissioner Berry] has not been interested in going out of her way to do anything to protect workers if it burdens business in any way,” said Clermont Ripley, co-director of the Workers’ Rights Project of the North Carolina Justice Center, one of the organizations on the petition. On Nov. 8, 2016, Cherie Berry became the first labor commissioner in the history of the state to be elected to a fifth four-year term. Fourteen states have adopted similar COVID-19 worker safety protections. “The available data does not support that death or serious physical harm would be the likely outcome for the majority of those who contract the disease,” she wrote. Contribute now to help fund reporting on economic recovery in the Triangle, and to support new reporters. Real-time updates and all local stories you want right in the palm of your hand. How can we make this page better for you? The groups that proposed the rule, along with other members of the N.C. Farmworker Advocacy Network, have held several events to call on the governor and DOL to protect workers, especially at farms and food processing plants, where there have been around 5,000 cases of COVID-19 and 21 deaths in North Carolina, according to data collected by the Food & Environment Reporting Network. For Farmworkers (in Spanish) For Advocates (in Spanish) For Advocates (in English) (updated 4/29/20) H2A … Virginia Developments. OSHA COVID-19 Posters (Various Languages, Various Industries), CDC COVID-19 Posters (Various Languages, Various Topics). “She’s essentially saying, ‘I’m abandoning my mission to protect workers because I’m buying into myths and lies that COVID-19 is not serious and we really don’t know that much about it.’ And that’s just not true,” said Debbie Berkowitz, director of the Worker Safety and Health program at the National Employment Law Project and former chief of staff at the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Despite the low risk of exposure in most job sectors, some workers in the United States may have exposure to infectious people, including travelers who contracted COVID-19 abroad. Clean and disinfect work areas frequently. The labor commissioner is a constitutional officer elected statewide by the people of North Carolina to serve a four-year term running concurrently with the governor and all other members of the Council of State. Readers will no doubt recall that, during the week of July 27, 2020, the Virginia Department of Labor and Industry adopted an Emergency Temporary Standard concerning COVID-19 … Lastly, the NCDOL Library offers free safety and health videos (including ones on COVID-19) and related research assistance on consensus standards (i.e., ANSI, NFPA, NEC). Executive Order 176 lowered the indoor mass gathering limit for social gatherings to 10 people in an effort to drive down North Carolina’s key COVID-19 metrics. RALEIGH (October 12, 2020) – Workers’ rights advocates from across North Carolina are petitioning the North Carolina Department of Labor to adopt a rule that would protect workers during the COVID-19 public health and economic crisis. The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services has accelerated the timing for nearly $1.6 million in Medicaid payments that usually happen in the fall. The long-term risks of COVID-19 are not yet known, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Labor Commissioner Cherie Berry should work a few days in a N.C. food processing plant, where around 5,000 cases of COVID-19 and 21 deaths have been documented. Breaking News. Read the FAQs for Executive Order 176 The lawsuit seeks to force the NC Department of Labor to implement the emergency rule. They’re also considering seeking judicial review, alleging that the department’s denial of the proposed rulemaking was “arbitrary and capricious.” The deadline to file for judicial review is Dec. 9. Because 2019 nCoV is a newly discovered virus, much is still being learned about its effects and modes of transmission. Cooper introduced another executive order before Thanksgiving making the masked mandate enforceable against individuals, not just employers. OSHA said the company had violated the “general duty clause,” which states that workplaces must be free from recognized hazards that are “causing or likely to cause death or serious physical harm.”. Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) on COVID-19. The revised rule clarifies workers’ rights and employers’ responsibilities regarding FFCRA paid leave. If you’re temporarily out of work or your working hours have been reduced due to COVID-19, choose ‘coronavirus’ as your reason for separation when filing your claim. Where respirator use is required, the employer must implement an effective respiratory protection program including, but not limited to, medical evaluation and fit testing. Further, the Centers for Disease Control has videos on handwashing (English) (Spanish) and various other videos on COVID-19 (English) (Spanish). The OSH Division has adopted the following standards which are, or may be, applicable to occupational exposure to the 2019 novel coronavirus in North Carolina. 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