Page last updated September 20, 2021 at 12:03 p.m.
We are committed to supporting employers in Whatcom County during this unprecedented challenge of COVID-19. You can find information below that will help answer questions you might have. If you are unable to find the information you need, please contact us:
By email: COVIDresponse@co.whatcom.wa.us
By phone: 360-778-6100
Businesses, recreation sites, and venues are currently open at full capacity (but they must meet workplace safety requirements). The one exception is large indoor events hosting 10,000 or more people, which may be open at 75% capacity.
You can find further reopening details from the Office of the Governor.
All employees, vaccinated or not, are required to wear masks in indoor spaces that are accessible to the public. See L&I's guidance for more details. More information is also available on our masking page.
These workplace safety and coronavirus prevention recommendations and requirements are still in effect:
See our guide, COVID Vaccine Employer Resources (PDF), which offers expert advice to help employers support their employees and communicate effectively about COVID-19 vaccination.
We are updating our COVID-19 Vaccine page regularly with information about the COVID-19 vaccine in Whatcom County.
Businesses with 100 or more employees – firm or company-wide – must develop, implement, and enforce a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy, unless they adopt a policy requiring employees either to get vaccinated or undergo regular COVID-19 testing and wear a face covering at work.
OSHA’s Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) also requires employers to:
COVID-19 vaccines can keep workers safe on the job, and data shows they’re the best way to end the spread of the coronavirus in the workplace. We know the COVID-19 vaccine is safe, effective and free – and all workers are eligible, regardless of immigration status.
If you have an employee who has been diagnosed with COVID-19, or is a close contact of someone with COVID-19, they must stay home and not go to work. As an employer, you must also contact our Business Response Team (BRT) so that we can assist you. Contact us:
We will work with you to keep your business open while ensuring the health and safety of your employees.
The guidance and resources below will help your business or organization respond quickly and effectively when a worker has confirmed COVID-19 or has been exposed to COVID-19.
As a business, you're responsible to follow masking rules for employees and customers.
Review the L&I requirements for employers regarding employee mask requirements.
Review the Governor's Office mask guidance. It clarifies employer, business, and organization requirements.
Review the Governor's Office mask guidance. It explains employer, business, and organization responsibilities involving customers or patrons, including signage requirements and face covering exemptions.
A guide for employers to support and communicate effectively with employees about COVID-19 vaccination.
The "Safer. Stronger. Together." campaign was created to support businesses as we work together to ensure a healthy and welcoming environment for all. The ultimate goal of this campaign is to keep our community healthy while we build consumer confidence and reopen our economy.