March 24, 2020
On Saturday, March 21, 2020, New Jersey Governor Murphy signed into law Executive Order 107 ("EO 107") (Full Text Here) which orders closed all non-essential retail businesses, and lists the retail businesses allowed to remain open. EO 107 also orders “all businesses or non-profits in New Jersey, whether closed or open to the public,” to accommodate their employers, wherever practicable, for telework and other work-from-home arrangements, and to make best efforts to reduce staff to those necessary to ensure that essential operations can continue.
Here is the text of these paragraphs:
10. All businesses or non-profits in the State, whether closed or open to the public, must accommodate their workforce, wherever practicable, for telework or work-from-home arrangements. For purposes of this order, “telework” means the practice of working from home or alternative locations closer to home through the use of technology that equips the individual to access necessary materials.
11. To the extent a business or non-profit has employees that cannot perform their functions via telework or work-from-home arrangements, the business or non-profit should make best efforts to reduce staff on site to the minimal number necessary to ensure that essential operations can continue. Examples of employees who need to be physically present at their work site in order to perform their duties include, but are not limited to, law enforcement officers, fire fighters, and other first responders, cashiers or store clerks, construction workers, utility workers, repair workers, warehouse workers, lab researchers, information technology maintenance workers, janitorial and custodial staff, and certain administrative staff.
Employees reporting to work are permitted to travel to and from work. Businesses should give each employee a letter indicating that the employee works in an industry permitted to continue operations.
Yesterday afternoon, New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Singh Grewal said that New Jersey is ramping up efforts to enforce EO 107. He said that the time for warnings are over, and that companies should consider today's announcement their "final warning." He said that prosecutors are coordinating with law enforcement to enforce EO 107.
Moses & Singer has been advising our New Jersey clients on compliance with EO 107. For questions, including best practices for your workspace and employees, or even assistance drafting a letter for commuters, please contact me at (212) 554-7863 or firstname.lastname@example.org.