Mandatory Safety Standards for Workplaces in Massachusetts

These new standards apply universally to all workplaces in Massachusetts, and are designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission to employees and customers.


The Department of Public Health (DPH) and the COVID-19 Command Center developed new Mandatory Workplace Safety Standards in consultation with the Reopening Advisory Board. These new standards will apply universally to all reopening workplaces, and are designed to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission to employees and customers during the first phase of reopening, and are applicable to all sectors and industries.

These safety standards have been supplemented by sector-specific safety protocols and recommended best practices, which provide further details and limited exceptions.

Social Distancing Policy

  • All persons, including employees, customers, and vendors should remain at least six feet apart to the greatest extent possible, both inside and outside workplaces
  • Establish protocols to ensure that employees can practice adequate social distancing
  • Provide signage for safe social distancing
  • Require face coverings or masks for all employees 

Hygiene Protocols

  • Provide hand washing capabilities throughout the workplace
  • Ensure frequent hand washing by employees and adequate supplies to do so
  • Provide regular sanitization of high touch areas, such as workstations, equipment, screens, doorknobs, restrooms throughout work site

Staffing and Operations

  • Provide training for workers regarding COVID-19 safety which includes at least:
    1. Signs and symptoms of COVID-19;
    2. Risk of asymptomatic spread of COVID-19;
    3. Employee and employer requirements under COVID-19 Workplace Safety Regulations, including sector specific standards;
    4. Anti-retaliation protection available under 454 CMR 31.00
  • Training shall be documented, and provided at no cost to the employee during working hours
  • Employees who are displaying COVID19-like symptoms do not report to work
  • Establish a plan for employees getting ill from Covid-19 at work, and a return-to-work plan
  • Employers should take measures to ensure employees comply with all State-issued rules concerning out of state Travel for any employer-paid or -reimbursed travel

Cleaning and Disinfecting

  • Establish and maintain cleaning protocols specific to the business
  • When an active employee is diagnosed with COVID19, cleaning and disinfecting must be performed
  • Disinfection of all common surfaces must take place at intervals appropriate to said workplace


Sector Specific Safety Protocols and Best Practices

Mandatory safety protocols and recommended best practices for sectors that were eligible to open in Phases 1, 2 and 3. Additional sector guidance for future phases will be issued at a later date. 


Information to help businesses meet the self-certification requirement.

All businesses must meet these requirements before reopening. 

  • COVID-19 control plan template – Template that satisfies the written control plan requirement for self-certification (click on link, fill out the form and save/print for your records)

  • Compliance attestation poster – Poster that businesses are required to print, sign, and post in an area within the business premises that is visible to workers and visitors (click on link, download and print and then post at the store)

      • Employer and Worker posters – Posters that businesses can print and display within the business premises to describe the rules for maintaining social distancing, hygiene protocols, and cleaning and disinfecting

Employer Poster (click on link, download and print and then post at the store)

Worker Poster (click on link, download and print and then post at the store)


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  • Sunday, February 14, 2021 10:24 AM | Anonymous
  • Monday, February 08, 2021 6:31 AM | Anonymous
  • Tuesday, January 26, 2021 3:01 PM | Anonymous
  • Tuesday, December 29, 2020 10:19 AM | Anonymous


    Last week, the Administration announced a $668 million business relief package to be administered by Massachusetts Growth Capital Corporation (MGCC). The business relief package consists of two programs: (1) a recapitalization of the first small business relief program, which launched in October and (2) additional funding for businesses that fall into specific industry sectors. MGCC is reviewing existing applications from the first small business relief program, and is preparing to post the application for the sector-specific grant program.

    1.        A program overview for the sector-specific program is now online and can be found here.

    2.        The application period for the new program will run from Thursday, December 31st through Friday, January 15th.

    3.        Businesses that already applied to MGCC’s first small business relief program from October do not need to reapply to the new program. All applications in the existing program are currently being reviewed.

    4.        Businesses that have already submitted complete and accurate applications to the first program and either (a) meet the demographic preferences from the first program or (b) meet the sector-specific preferences from the new program will receive funding.

    1.        Demographic preferences: Minority-owned, women-owned, veteran-owned, LGBTQ+-owned, businesses owned by persons with disabilities, or businesses located in Gateway Cities

    2.        Sector preferences: Restaurants/Bars, Independent Retailers, Indoor Recreation and Entertainment, Personal Services, Event Support Companies (additional details)

    1.        Businesses that have already applied to MGCC through the first program will be notified of their award status by January 18th.

    2.        Businesses that have not already applied to MGCC and choose to apply in the new program will be notified of their award status in February.

  • Tuesday, December 29, 2020 10:09 AM | Anonymous


    The long-awaited second COVID-19 recovery package was signed into law yesterday. The package includes many provisions NFIB and small business owners have been fighting for, including a second round of funding for both the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and the Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Advance Grant, though eligibility is more targeted for both programs.

    The new law also makes a number of business-friendly tax changes to both programs, as well as extending some of the tax credits from the first recovery package.

    NFIB’s experts walked through many details in a free pre-recorded webinar here.





  • Monday, December 28, 2020 2:32 PM | Anonymous
  • Monday, December 21, 2020 1:59 PM | Anonymous
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