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Two-thirds of Americans uncomfortable with returning to their workplace: poll

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Two out of three Americans are uncomfortable with returning to their place of work as more and more states begin to reopen their economies while the coronavirus pandemic continues, a new Qualtrics poll finds.

The poll found that 66 percent of Americans surveyed did not want to return to their workplace, with 63 percent saying that they want assurance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that it’s safe to return to work before doing so.

Only 25 percent said they think they’ll return to work in May, with 48 percent saying that they don’t expect to go back to work until August.

The reopening of businesses has raised questions of how states will ensure that the businesses that have been allowed to reopen gradually will follow social distancing guidelines.

Several states such as Georgia, Texas and Iowa have stated that employees who refuse to work will become ineligible for unemployment benefits provided by the CARES Act. Under the CARES Act, fear of contracting COVID-19 in the workplace isn’t one of the special circumstances that makes employees exempt from returning to work.

Lawmakers as well as labor groups such as the AFL-CIO have called for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration to release and enforce strict health regulations for businesses that prioritize worker safety during the pandemic.

The poll, conducted April 27-28, surveyed 2,003 adults in the U.S., with a margin of error of plus or minus 3 percentage points.

Tags CARES Act Coronavirus Unemployment Worker Safety
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