LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Employees in various sectors across Los Angeles who want to form workplace councils to monitor compliance of COVID-19 regulations are getting support from county officials.
The Board of Supervisors Tuesday voted in favor of creating worker-run public health councils in an attempt to stem the spread of the coronavirus in work environments.
Under the motion co-authored by Supervisors Sheila Kuehl and Mark Ridley-Thomas, employees must be allowed to form public health councils without retaliation by their employer.
The county in turn will support employees who want to form councils and train them on protocols so they can help monitor compliance. Those councils would expand public health enforcement capacity by working with third party organizations certified by the Department of Public Health (DPH) “to monitor, document and report any violations” of county guidelines.
Participation in the program is voluntary, officials said.
The board also directed county counsel to draft an anti-retaliation ordinance to protect employees who may identify possible violations.
“Every worker has the right to feel safe in their workplace and to voice concerns without fear of losing their job,” said Ridley-Thomas, who along with Kuehl first floated the idea in July.
Since then, county staffers have been meeting with business and labor groups, and acting CEO Fesia Davenport has been trying to identify funding for the program.