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Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine urges extended working from home ‘as much as humanly possible'

Although general office environments have been given the green light to reopen on May 4, Gov. DeWine is urging companies to keep their employees working at home.

COLUMBUS, Ohio — As Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced his first-phase plans to reopen the state, he declared that general office environments can get restarted on Monday, May 4 – but with one major request.

He urged all businesses to continue to allow their employees to work from home until further notice.

“Companies have found out that many of the members of their office can work from home and be just as efficient,” DeWine said during his April 27 press conference. “We are asking companies to continue to do that as much as humanly possible, continue to have people work from home. Again, we are all in this together, and what they do is going to allow us to move forward quicker as far as the opening of Ohio. Personnel work at home if at all humanly possible.”

He tweeted a follow-up to this work-from-home request with more information April 28.

"In office environments that are somewhat lower risk, I still encourage those who can work at home to continue working from home. This is a difficult time and I would hate to see us having to go backwards."

RELATED: Ohio's stay-at-home order (now called 'Stay Safe Ohio' order) extended through May 29: Here are the changes

RELATED: List: These are the businesses that must remain closed in Ohio's extended stay-at-home order

You can watch some of his comments regarding the need to continue working from home in the player below:

He offered an outline of his plan for businesses with the following mandatory requirements:

  • Ensure minimum six feet between people. If not possible, install barriers.
  • Personnel should work from home when possible.
  • Employees must perform daily symptom assessment.
  • Require employees to say home if symptomatic.
  • Face coverings must be worn at all times while working.
  • Reduce sharing of work materials.
  • Limit travel as much as possible.
  • Stagger arrival of all employees and guests.
  • Post signage on healthy safety guidelines in common areas.

You can see more of those requirements below:

He also listed five mandatory protocols for offices to follow:

1. Require masks for employees and clients/customers

2. Conduct daily employee screenings at the start of each shift and after breaks by employers and employees (self-evaluation) to determine if “fit for duty.”

3. Maintain good hygiene at all times – hand washing and social distancing.

4. Clean and sanitize workplaces, especially in high-touch areas through workday and at the close of business or between shifts.

5. Limit capacity to whichever is lower: Level of confidence in assuring employee and customer health/social distancing best practices, or 50 percent of normal capacity. Use appointment setting where possible to limit congestion.

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