On December 16, 2020, Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) updated their guidance on Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers to support prioritization decisions related to COVID-19 vaccines, especially in the early stages with vaccines in short supply.
At the outset of the pandemic, CISA, in collaboration with other federal agencies, state and local governments, and the private sector, issued the Essential Critical Infrastructure Workforce Guidance for COVID-19 response to help officials and organizations protect workers and communities and ensure the continued safe and secure operation of critical infrastructure, by identifying essential critical infrastructure workers that may require specialized risk management strategies so that they can work safely.
As the response evolved, so has this guidance. With the arrival of vaccines, the country has entered a new phase in response to the pandemic. CISA’s latest version of the guidance includes updates to the list of essential workers in critical infrastructure work settings. This guidance is intended to be used as a tool to help officials plan and prepare for the allocation of scarce resources used to protect essential workers against COVID-19.
Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers in Food and Agriculture
The following are among the many workers identified as essential in food and agriculture:
CISA recommends creating a risk categorization methodology for worker safety. Factors to be considered include:
Agribusiness employers are encouraged to take a fresh look at the essential critical infrastructure worker list and the job functions of their workforce. Based on the responses to the risk categorization factors above, employers can categorize the conditions their workers face and implement measures to increase safety.
Ensuring that workers can continue performing essential work takes careful planning. To learn more about protecting your employees, contact the AssuredPartners Agribusiness team of specialists.
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