The invisible threat of microbes, bacteria, mold, pathogens, and diseases were held to a relative low concern. With the post corona world, things have changed. Not only are people more cognizant of the threat, regulations and laws will be enforced more thoroughly as well. You will be held liable if you are not protecting your employees and establishment.
OSHA regulations are specific to US law.
General Duty Clause, 29 USC 654, section 5(a)(1) requires that employers protect their employees from recognized hazards.
“Each employer shall furnish to each of his employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees.”
Additionally, the coronavirus is not listed as an exception to recording an occupational illness in 29 CFR 1904.5(b)(2). This means that if an employee contracts COVID-19 from another employee or through occupational exposure on a cleaning job, the illness is recordable on the OSHA log for that business. If it results in job restriction, days away or fatality, this is also required to be recorded.
There’s a requirement to contact OSHA to actually REPORT a fatality or hospitalization if it is from coronavirus. In the case of a death, an OSHA inspection and investigation would follow and could result in a fine if the company didn’t take measures when they knew about it and should have.
Each employer –
(1) 29 USC 654 shall furnish to each of his employees employment and a place of employment which are free from recognized hazards that are causing or are likely to cause death or serious physical harm to his employees;
(2) Shall comply with occupational safety and health standards promulgated under this Act.
(b) Each employee shall comply with occupational safety and health standards and all rules, regulations, and orders issued pursuant to this Act which are applicable to his own actions and conduct.