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COVID-19 is a new disease. It's hard for employers to know what to do or what they are expected to do as the situation changes daily. State law may affect an employer's obligations. However even in currently unaffected states, employees expect employers to do what they can to keep them safe and be able to answer "what if."
With all types of risk assessment and emergency planning the best first line of defense is elimination of hazard. So today is the day to make a plan because elimination of hazard can't be accomplished in hindsight.
The second most effective way of eliminating risk is substitution, meaning to substitute the source of the hazard by something else. Such as a bank could substitute waiting on customers in person by better utilizing drive-up windows or remote teller stations, thereby providing a way to put social distance and physical barriers between customers and employees.
There are also many other questions to be considered, such as what are an employer's compliance obligations, and how leave, benefit and sick policies apply and if they should be temporarily changed and how.
Today is the day to map out your own particular plan to deal with this emerging issue. No employer wants to fail their employees and no business wants to be known as the first in their state for an outbreak of a new disease.
MBA, MS, specializes in solving company "people problems"