11 Workers Test Positive for COVID-19 after Exposed to Hazards by Housing Facility

11 Workers Test Positive for COVID-19 after Exposed to Hazards by Housing Facility

Tinton Falls transitional housing facility did not isolate the infected residents nor enforce masks and social distancing.

An investigation conducted found numerous violations at Tinton Falls transitional housing facility were 11 employees and 28 residents tested positive for COVID-19 by late March. According to a press release, in response to a complaint, OSHA found while Seaside Guest Services’ continuity of operations plan required those infected to be isolated and have the workers notified, neither happened. It was also found that the facility provided masks for its employees but did not enforce their use. Seaside also did not enforce social distancing despite posting signs in four housing units.

OSHA cited the facility’s operator, AMA Health Holdings LLC, with two citations for failing to create effective measures to stop the spread of the disease and not recording each work-related illness. The agency proposed $10,923 in penalties.

“Seaside Guest Services’ failure to isolate workers from infected residents, and enforce its own mask and social distancing policies is difficult to comprehend,” said OSHA Area Director Paula Dixon-Roderick in Marlton. “Their neglect exposed workers and others to the coronavirus, and raised the possibility that 11 workers were infected as a result.”

Seaside Guest Services provides housing for people in area behavioral-health programs and those who have completed some level of addiction treatment. Read more about feasible and acceptable means of abatement for this hazard here.

The employer has 15 business days from receipt of its citations and penalties to comply, request an informal conference with OSHA’s area director or contest the findings before the independent OSHRC.

About the Author

Shereen Hashem is the Associate Content Editor for Occupational Health & Safety magazine.

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