As per the Governor’s Executive Order issued on April 12, 2020, Essential businesses, as well as state and local government agencies and authorities, must procure, fashion, or otherwise obtain face coverings and provide such coverings to employees who directly interact with the public during the course of their work at no-cost to the employee.
Cattaraugus County Office of Emergency Services recommends essential businesses to utilize the compiled list of resources below to procure face coverings. Supplies are
limited within the County and are prioritized for healthcare workers and first responders.
Executive Order 202.16, issued on April 12, 2020, provides the following directive:
For all essential businesses or entities, any employees who are present in the workplace shall be provided and shall wear face coverings when in direct contact with customers or members of the public. Businesses must provide, at their expense, such face coverings for their employees. This provision may be enforced by local governments or local law enforcement as if it were an order pursuant to section 12 or 12-b of the Public Health Law. This requirement shall be effective Wednesday, April 15 at 8 p.m.
Some key points:
- Businesses are deemed essential by the Empire State Development Corporation (ESD), pursuant to the authority provided in Executive Order 202.6. Please visit the ESD website for specific information on essential businesses.
- Face coverings include, but are not limited to, cloth (e.g. homemade sewn, quick cut, bandana), surgical masks, N-95 respirators, and face shields. Please visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)" website for information on cloth face covers and other types of personal protective equipment (PPE), as well as instructions on use and cleaning.
- Direct interaction with the public shall be determined by the employer, but, at a minimum, shall include any employee who is routinely within close contact (i.e. six feet or less) with members of the public, including but not limited to customers or clients.
- Employees are allowed to use their own face coverings, but shall not be mandated to do so by their employer
- Employees are required to wear face coverings when in direct contact with members of the public, except where doing so would inhibit or otherwise impair the employee’s health
Face Coverings Resources
(There are numerous resources online, but here are a few to jump start your search)
- Mask Makers of Western NY (Facebook Group)
- Amazon.com (stocks appear to be limited)
- Homemade face coverings made from pre-made kits
- Joann’s Fabrics Olean store can be contacted at 716-372-8990
- Find out if any of your employees have been making face coverings or has the ability to make face coverings
- Ask friends and family if they are able to make face coverings
- Utilize community based groups such as sewing groups, church groups, or others who could be of assistance
- Numerous patterns and videos online to make your own face coverings
- CDC says cotton fabric is best
- There should at least be 2 layers of fabric
- DIY Cloth Face Coverings on the CDC
Helpful Packet of Face Covering Info