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Michigan Modifies Third Shelter-In-Place Order To Further Open The Economy


Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued Executive Order 2020-70, which expanded the industries that may perform in-person work under the state’s shelter-in-place order that is slated to end on May 15, 2020. The new order’s modifications impact only the new industries discussed below and take effect on May 7. Which industry employers can now perform in-person work and what restrictions must they abide by?

Affected Industries

The new order adds four new types of “resumed activity” workers (RAWs): (a) workers who perform work that is traditionally and primarily performed outdoors; (b) construction industry workers (including the building trades such as electricians and plumbers); (c) workers in the real estate industry; and (d) “workers necessary to the manufacture of goods that support workplace modification to forestall the spread of COVID-19 infections.”

The first category appears to strictly cover workers who perform almost 100% of their job outdoors (e.g., forestry workers, parking enforcement workers, and outdoor equipment workers). The last category is aimed at manufacturers of office dividers and other apparatuses employers would use to prevent the spread of COVID-19 within the workplace.

Employers covered by the newest must designate their RAWs in writing, but they are not required to carry the designation on their person. Also, as a reminder, you should keep copies of your written designations at the worksite in case government officials decide to visit and request proof of compliance with the shelter-in-place order.

Compliance Measures Applicable To Affected Industries

The new order requires all resumed activity work be performed consistently with social distancing practices and mitigation measures mentioned previously. However, the traditional outdoor and construction RAWs must also abide by the following “enhanced” social distancing measures:

Construction work is subject to even more requirements, including:

Finally, the real estate industry is also subject to a few unique caveats:

What Should Employers Do?

As you begin the process of reopening, you should familiarize yourself with our alert: 5 Steps To Reopen Your Workplace, According To CDC’s Latest Guidance. You should also keep handy our 4-Step Plan For Handling Confirmed COVID-19 Cases When Your Business Reopens in the event you learn of a positive case at your workplace. For a more thorough analysis of the many issues you may encounter from a labor and employment perspective, we recommend you review our FP BEYOND THE CURVE: Post-Pandemic Back-To-Business FAQs For Employers and our FP Resource Center For Employers.


Fisher Phillips will continue to monitor the rapidly developing COVID-19 situation and provide updates as appropriate. Make sure you are subscribed to Fisher Phillips’ Alert System to get the most up-to-date information. For further information, contact your Fisher Phillips attorney, any attorney in our Detroit office, or any member of our Post-Pandemic Strategy Group Roster.

This Legal Alert provides an overview of a specific developing situation. It is not intended to be, and should not be construed as, legal advice for any particular fact situation.



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