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Whitmer appoints workplace safety director to guide coronavirus reopening

News Source

LANSING — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday appointed a COVID-19 workplace safety director to help ensure Michigan's economy reopens without endangering workers.

Whitmer named Sean Egan, deputy director of the Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity, to the post.

“Sean Egan has spent his career helping working families in Michigan and I am confident he will continue to do everything in his power to protect workers and their families from the spread of COVID-19,” Whitmer said in a news release.

“He will be responsible for helping ensure that as businesses across the state begin to reopen under the MI Safe Start Plan, they enact strict safety measures to protect the health and safety of employees and customers.”

Egan is charged with coordinating the state's efforts to monitor and enforce workplace safeguards, according to an executive directive signed by Whitmer. Employers who fail to follow COVID-19 safety rules established by the state will be issued citations and have their names made public, the directive says. The state will work on a process to have those public postings removed as employers come into compliance, the directive says.

In his deputy director's job, Egan oversees the Michigan Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

A U.S. Navy veteran and International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers journeyman and former union official, Egan said that by "taking the right steps to protect their employees and customers, businesses will serve a critical role in lowering the chance of a second wave."

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