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Protecting the Federal Workforce During the COVID-19 Pandemic

The Safer Federal Workforce Task Force (Task Force) was established by Section 4 of Executive Order 13991 on Protecting the Federal Workforce and Requiring Mask-Wearing, of January 20, 2021. The Task Force is co-chaired by the White House COVID-19 Response Coordinator, the Administrator of General Services, and the Director of the Office of Personnel Management (OPM). Task Force members include: the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), the Director of the Federal Protective Service, the Director of the U.S. Secret Service, the Administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, the Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and the Secretary of Veterans Affairs.

The President created the Task Force to give the heads of Federal agencies ongoing guidance to keep their employees safe and their agencies operating during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following resources include Executive Orders, key guidance from documents issued by the Task Force, and key guidance from OMB, CDC, OPM, and the General Services Administration (GSA) related to the Task Force’s mission. Further guidance from the Task Force can be found in the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) section of this website. Agencies should refer to the What’s New? page to review new and updated FAQs and guidance from the Task Force that support agencies in implementing CDC guidance and recommendations.

  • Read the President’s Executive Order on Protecting the Federal Workforce and Requiring Mask-Wearing (Signed January 20, 2021). It establishes the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force and requires on-duty Federal employees, as well as anyone working in or visiting Federal buildings or Federal lands, to wear masks, maintain physical distance, and adhere to other public health measures, as provided in CDC guidelines.
  • Read the Model Agency COVID-19 Safety Principles (Updated September 15, 2022; PDF, Download Adobe Reader). It outlines model safety principles for executive departments and agencies to revise their existing COVID-19 workplace safety plans.
    • NOTE: Agencies should refer to the What’s New? page to review new and updated FAQs and guidance from the Task Force that support agencies in implementing CDC guidance updated since the publication of these model safety principles, pursuant to Executive Order 13991. Where the model safety principles and more recently updated FAQs or guidance conflict as they relate to specific workplace safety protocols, the information in the FAQs should be followed.
    • Read implementation guidance on updates to Federal agency COVID-19 Workplace Safety Protocols (Issued August 17, 2022; PDF, Download Adobe Reader)
    • Read implementation guidance on COVID-19 Community Levels (Updated August 17, 2022; Originally Issued February 28, 2022; PDF, Download Adobe Reader)
  • Read the President’s Executive Order on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees (Signed September 9, 2021). It requires COVID-19 vaccination for Federal executive branch employees.
    • NOTE: To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce the COVID-19 vaccination requirement pursuant to Executive Order 14043 on Requiring Coronavirus Disease 2019 Vaccination for Federal Employees. Safer Federal Workforce Task Force guidance on other Federal agency safety protocols remains in effect. For answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs) on compliance with the applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, see this guidance (Updated August 17, 2022; Originally Issued January 24, 2022; PDF, Download Adobe Reader).
  • Read the President’s Executive Order on Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors (Signed September 9, 2021). It ensures that the parties that contract with the Federal Government provide adequate COVID-19 safeguards to their workers performing on or in connection with a Federal Government contract or contract-like instrument.
    • NOTE: To ensure compliance with an applicable preliminary nationwide injunction, which may be supplemented, modified, or vacated, depending on the course of ongoing litigation, the Federal Government will take no action to implement or enforce Executive Order 14042. See For Federal Contractors
    • Read the COVID-19 Workplace Safety: Guidance for Federal Contractors and Subcontractors (Updated November 10, 2021; PDF, Download Adobe Reader). It sets forth workplace safety protocols for Federal contractors and subcontractors pursuant to Executive Order 14042 (Ensuring Adequate COVID Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors). (Note: a revised PDF was posted on November 11, 2021 that corrected an inadvertent typographical error.)

For questions or comments, email the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force at SaferFederalWorkforce@gsa.gov