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New El Paso coronavirus restrictions that workers, business owners and parents need to know


The El Paso Department of Public Health issued a series of new orders this week that will alter much of day-to-day life during the coronavirus pandemic. Most of the attention has been on the impacts on bars or restaurants, but many other establishments are affected.

How workplaces must change

Businesses must have staff work remotely if possible and expand sick leave policies for parents who need to stay home because of school dismissals, according to the workplace order. Policies also should encourage workers to stay home if they feel sick.

Workplaces also must space workers six feet from each other, stagger work schedules and limit in-person meetings. 

Businesses also must conduct screenings for temperature and respiratory illness for workers or visitors arriving at the workplace.

What parents need to know about new day-care rules

No more than 20 children are allowed in a room at the same time, according to the order for day-care centers.

Day-care workers over age 60 with serious medical conditions must be assigned to areas with minimal exposure to children and visitors.

Children must be dropped off and picked up outside the day-care center, unless there is “a legitimate need for the parent to enter an operation.”

Only one parent, guardian or designee can drop off or pick up a child.

No more visits in assisted-living facilities

New regulations suspend visitor access to senior and assisted-living facilities, with some exceptions for end-of-life care.

These facilities are asked to consider suspending new admissions.

Robert Moore

Robert Moore is the founder and CEO of El Paso Matters. He has been a journalist in the Texas Borderlands since 1986. He spent most of his career at the El Paso Times, serving in a variety of leadership roles. His work has received a number of top journalism honors including the Burl Osborne award for editorial leadership, the James Madison Award from the Texas Freedom of Information Foundation, the Jack Douglas Award from Texas Associated Press Managing Editors and the Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership from the Texas Press Association. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Benjamin C. Bradlee Editor of the Year Award from the National Press Association. As a freelance journalist, Moore’s work has appeared in the Washington Post, Texas Monthly, ProPublica, National Public Radio, The Guardian and other publications. He has been featured as an expert on the border by CNN, MSNBC, BBC, CBC and PBS.

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