Vigilant Blog

News, trends and analysis in employment law, HR, safety & workers' comp

Mar 27, 2020

IDAHO: Order issued to self-isolate for non-essential activities


On March 25, 2020, Dave Jeppesen, Director of the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare, issued an Order to Self-Isolate for the State of Idaho, which requires all Idaho residents to self-isolate and all non-essential businesses to close from 1:30 p.m. on March 25, 2020, until 11:59 p.m. on April 15, 2020, unless the order is modified, extended, or rescinded. The goal of the order is to slow the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

The order prohibits all people in Idaho from leaving their homes unless they’re participating in “Essential Activities” or employed in “Essential Businesses.” To be employed in Essential Businesses, workers must be: (1) identified in the order (see the definition for Essential Businesses on pages 7 through 9); (2) identified in Governor Brad Little’s “Essential Services” list; or (3) carrying out Minimum Basic Operations for a non-essential business (see page 9 of the order for this definition, which includes activities such as security and payroll). Importantly, the order also incorporates by reference the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Memorandum on Identification of Essential Critical Infrastructure Workers During COVID-19 Response, as well as guidance from the Department of the Treasury and Department of Defense. If you’re an Essential Business, you must establish and enforce social distancing (i.e., maintaining at least six feet between individuals) and sanitation measures; for additional helpful guidance on these topics, see the United States Department of Labor’s Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Interim Guidance for Businesses and Employers to Plan and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019.

Tips: Review Idaho’s order and the associated Essential Services list, as well as the federal government guidance they incorporate, to evaluate whether your business qualifies as an Essential Business, and if so, which of your workers are essential in providing those business services. There are many categories that could apply to your business, particularly those in manufacturing and agriculture. If you determine your business doesn’t qualify as an Essential Business, then you must close your facilities for anything other than Minimum Basic Operations. If employees can perform any work at home, you should implement necessary steps to allow them to continue working while complying with Idaho’s order, and be sure to direct those who are out of work to the Idaho Department of Labor, including these helpful FAQs, to evaluate their options for receiving pay while the order is in place.

This website presents general information in nontechnical language. This information is not legal advice. Before applying this information to a specific management decision, consult legal counsel.