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The Law dealing with worker safety dates from 1977 and amended the Consolidation of Labor Laws (CLT).
The determination for the use of specific masks for workers in the health area, pharmacies, supermarkets and schools that have direct contact with the public in the state was published in the last state decree to combat the Covid-19 pandemic, on January 15.
For the MPCE, the supply of masks is the responsibility of the employer, as provided for by labor legislation with regard to the provision of PPE to employees. “As the mask is an individual protection item for the contagion of Covid-19, this is how it should be treated by companies”, said the body in a note.
The same position is that of the OAB-CE Trade Union Law Commission. According to the entity, “considering that the use of the masks specified in the new state decree is a requirement of the public power for collective protection and, also considering that the supply of equipment for individual and collective use is the obligation of the employer, it is up to the employer, as its obligation, to provide its employees with the aforementioned masks”.
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If any employee of one of these establishments is caught by the inspection without using the N95 or PFF2 mask, the state decree provides for a seven-day ban on the site, if the person responsible for the space does not comply with the norm. There is a possibility that the period of the ban can be successively doubled in case of recurrence.
THE The decree also allows for a fine of up to R$75,000 to be imposed., which can be dosed per day of noncompliance. If necessary, the seizure or suspension of activities is also authorized.
The decision to make it mandatory took place after the introduction of the omicron variant of the coronavirus in the state, it has a higher degree of transmissibility than all previous versions of the virus. Health authorities in the United States have warned that people should seek to wear masks with the highest degree of protection they can, as is the case with the N95 or PFF2.
What we should know about PFF2/N95 masks
A study by the Max Planck Institute in Germany found that PFF2-type masks (equivalent to other known international standards such as N95, KN95 and P2 masks) offer almost 100% protection against Covid-19.
If a person infected with the coronavirus comes into contact with a healthy person in a closed space – even at a short distance and after 20 minutes – the risk of contagion is only 0.1%. If the person is vaccinated, the risk of contracting the disease is even lower, the researchers point out.
If the mask is not correctly fitted to the face, the risk of infection in the same scenario rises to about 4%, points out the study, published in the scientific journal PNAS, of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States.
The analysis also showed that tight-fitting PFF2 masks protect 75 times more than surgical masks – which, however, reduce the risk of infection to a maximum of 10% if they are also well fitted.
See the instructions for use (and the main errors) of PFF2 — Photo: Anderson Cattai/G1