A List of Essential Workers That We Should Thank and Support During the Coronavirus Pandemic

Americans are counting on the essential workers that are risking their health during the coronavirus outbreak.

Also known as critical infrastructure workers, these employees or contractors are involved in public health and safety as well as community wellbeing, according to a statement by Christopher C. Krebs, director at the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA).

While many of us are being told to stay at home, these workers have a responsibility during the outbreak to continue operations, potentially putting their lives in danger through contracting COVID-19. Some of these people work behind the scenes without the general public realising how essential they are to keeping society functioning.

To help bring awareness to all the jobs that the government has advised to be essential, Newsweek has compiled a list of all the workers.

Getty Images Police LA
Police cars are parked in front of the closed pier and beach amid the coronavirus pandemic on March 27, 2020 in Manhattan Beach, California. Los Angeles County closed all beaches as another measure to stem the spread of COVID-19. Police officers are one of many jobs considered essential during the COVID-19 outbreak. Mario Tama/Getty Images)

Private and Public Healthcare Essential Workers

  • Critical clinical workers who perform research, development and testing required for the COVID-19 response
  • Healthcare providers and caregivers, including:
    • Physicians
    • Dentists
    • Psychologists
    • Mid-level practitioners, nurses and assistants
    • Infection control and quality assurance personnel
    • Pharmacists
    • Physical and occupational therapists and assistants
    • Social workers
    • Optometrists
    • Speech pathologists
    • Chiropractors
    • Diagnostic and therapeutic technicians and technologists
  • Hospital and laboratory personnel including:
    • Accounting
    • Administrative
    • Admitting and discharge
    • Engineering
    • Epidemiological
    • Source plasma and blood donation
    • Food service
    • Housekeeping
    • Medical records
    • Information technology and operational technology
    • Nutritionists
    • Sanitarians
    • Respiratory therapists
  • Workers in other medical and biomedical facilities including:
    • Ambulatory Health and Surgical
    • Blood Banks
    • Clinics
    • Community Mental Health
    • Comprehensive Outpatient rehabilitation
    • End-Stage Renal Disease
    • Health Departments
    • Home Health care
    • Hospices
    • Hospitals
    • Long Term Care
    • Nursing Care Facilities
    • Organ Pharmacies
    • Procurement Organizations
    • Psychiatric Residential
    • Rural Health Clinics and Federally Qualified Health Centers
    • Retail facilities specializing in medical goods and supplies
  • Manufacturer workers for health manufacturing including
    • Biotechnology companies
    • Materials and parts suppliers
    • Logistics and warehouse operators
    • Distributors of medical equipment (including those who test and repair)
    • Personal protective equipment (PPE)
    • Isolation barriers
    • Medical gases
    • Pharmaceuticals (including materials used in radioactive drugs)
    • Dietary supplements
    • Blood and blood products
    • Vaccines
    • Testing materials
    • Laboratory supplies
    • Cleaning, sanitizing, disinfecting or sterilization supplies
    • Tissue and paper towel products
  • Public health/community health workers, including those who compile, model, analyze and communicate public health information
  • Blood and plasma donors and the employees of the organizations that operate and manage related activities
  • Workers who manage health plans, billing, and health information, who cannot practically work remotely
  • Workers who conduct community-based public health functions, conducting epidemiologic surveillance, compiling, analyzing and communicating public health information, who cannot practically work remotely
  • Workers performing information technology and cybersecurity functions at healthcare and public health facilities, who cannot practically work remotely
  • Workers performing security, incident management, and emergency operations functions at or on behalf of healthcare entities including healthcare coalitions, who cannot practically work remotely
  • Pharmacy employees who are necessary to maintain uninterrupted prescription filling
  • Workers performing mortuary funeral, cremation, burial, cemetery, and related services, including funeral homes, crematoriums, cemetery workers, and coffin makers
  • Workers who coordinate with other organizations to ensure the proper recovery, handling, identification, transportation, tracking, storage, and disposal of human remains and personal effects; certify the cause of death and facilitate access to mental/behavioral health services to the family members, responders, and survivors of an incident

Law Enforcement, public safety officers and first responders

  • Public, private, and voluntary personnel—both front line and management—in emergency management, law enforcement, fire and rescue services, emergency medical services and private security, to include public and private hazardous material responders, air medical service providers (pilots and supporting technicians), corrections, and search and rescue personnel
  • 911 call center employees and Public Safety Answering Points who can't perform their duties remotely
  • Fusion Center employees
  • Workers—including contracted vendors—who maintain, manufacture, or supply equipment and services supporting law enforcement emergency service and response operations, to include electronic security and life safety security personnel
  • Workers supporting the manufacturing of safety equipment and uniforms for law enforcement, public safety personnel and first responders
  • Workers supporting the operation of firearm or ammunition product manufacturers, retailers, importers, distributors and shooting ranges
  • Public agency workers responding to abuse and neglect of children, elders and dependent adults
  • Workers who support weather disaster and natural hazard mitigation and prevention activities
  • Security staff to maintain building access control and physical security measures

Food and Agriculture Essential Workers

  • Workers supporting groceries, pharmacies, convenience stores, and other retail, including unattended and vending, selling human food, animal/pet food and pet supply and beverage products
    • This also includes retail customer support service and information technology support staff necessary for online orders, pickup and delivery
  • Restaurant carry-out and quick-serve food operations including dark kitchen and food prep centers, and carry-out and delivery food employees
  • Food manufacturer employees and their supplier employees—to include:
    • Food ingredient production and processing facilities
    • Livestock, poultry, seafood slaughter facilities
    • Pet and animal feed processing facilities
    • Human food facilities producing by-products for animal food
    • Beverage production facilities
    • The production of food packaging
Getty Images Florida
Farm workers harvest zucchini on the Sam Accursio & Son's Farm on April 01, 2020 in Florida City, Florida. Sergio Martinez, a harvest crew supervisor, said that the coronavirus pandemic has caused them "to have to throw crops away due to less demand for produce in stores and restaurants. The farm workers who are essential to providing food for homebound families are worried that if the restaurants stay closed and peoples changed grocery store habits continue they would be out of work with no work for the near future." Joe Raedle/Getty Images
  • Farmers, farmworkers and agribusiness support services to include those employed in auction and sales:
    • Grain and oilseed handling
    • Processing and distribution
    • Animal food, feed and ingredient production
    • Packaging and distribution
    • Manufacturing, packaging and distribution of veterinary drugs
    • Truck delivery and transport
    • Farm and fishery labor needed to produce our food supply domestically and for export
  • Support service workers and their supplier employees to include:
    • Producing and harvesting field crops
    • Commodity inspection
    • Fuel ethanol facilities
    • Biodiesel and renewable diesel facilities
    • Storage facilities
  • Employees and firms supporting the distribution of food, feed, and beverage and ingredients used in these products including
    • Warehouse workers
    • Vendor-managed inventory controllers and blockchain managers
  • Workers supporting the sanitation and pest control of all food manufacturing processes and operations from wholesale to retail
  • Employees in cafeterias used to feed employees, particularly employee populations sheltered against COVID-19
  • Workers in animal diagnostic and food testing laboratories in private industries and in institutions of higher education
  • Government, private, and non-governmental organizations' workers essential for food assistance programs (including school lunch programs) and government payments
  • Employees of companies engaged in the production, storage, transport, and distribution of chemicals, medicines, vaccines and other substances used by the food and agriculture industry, including
    • Seeds
    • Pesticides
    • Herbicides
    • Fertilizers
    • Minerals
    • Enrichments
  • Animal agriculture workers to include those employed in veterinary health—including those involved in supporting emergency veterinary or livestock services:
    • Raising of animals for food
    • Animal production operations
    • Livestock markets
    • Slaughter and packing plants
    • Manufacturers, renderers, and associated regulatory and government workforce
  • Transportation supporting animal agricultural industries, including:
    • movement of animal medical and reproductive supplies and materials
    • animal vaccines
    • animal drugs
    • feed ingredients
    • feed and bedding
    • live animals,
    • animal by-products
    • deceased animals for disposal
  • Workers who support sawmills and the manufacture and distribution of fiber and forest products, including, but not limited to timber, paper, and other wood and fiber products
  • Employees engaged in the manufacture and maintenance of equipment and other infrastructure necessary for agricultural production and distribution

Essential Worker in the Energy Sector

  • Workers supporting the energy sector, regardless of the energy source—including but not limited to nuclear, fossil, hydroelectric, or renewable—segment of the system or infrastructure the worker is involved in or who are needed to monitor, operate, engineer, and maintain the reliability, safety, environmental health and physical and cybersecurity of the energy system
  • Energy/commodity trading/scheduling/marketing functions, who can't perform their duties remotely
  • IT and OT technology for essential energy sector operations including:
    • Support workers and customer service operations
    • Energy management systems, control systems and Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition SCADA systems
    • Energy sector entity data centers
    • Cybersecurity engineers
    • Cybersecurity risk management.
  • Workers supporting the energy sector through renewable energy infrastructure—including, but not limited to wind, solar, biomass, hydrogen, ocean, geothermal, and/or hydroelectric)—including those supporting construction, manufacturing, transportation, permitting, operation/maintenance, monitoring, and logistics
  • Workers and security staff involved in nuclear refueling operations
  • Providing services related to energy sector fuels—including, but not limited, petroleum (crude oil), natural gas, propane, natural gas liquids, other liquid fuels, nuclear, and coal)—supporting the mining, processing, manufacturing, construction, logistics, transportation, permitting, operation/maintenance, security, waste disposal and storage and monitoring of support for resources
  • Environmental remediation/monitoring, limited to immediate critical needs technicians
  • Manufacturing and distribution of equipment, supplies, and parts necessary to maintain production, maintenance, restoration and service at energy sector facilities (across all energy sector segments).

Electricity industry:

  • Workers who maintain, ensure or restore or are involved in the development, transportation, fuel procurement, expansion or operation of the generation, transmission, and distribution of electric power, including:
    • Call centers
    • Utility workers
    • Engineers
    • Retail electricity
    • Constraint maintenance
    • Fleet maintenance technicians, who cannot perform their duties remotely
  • Workers at coal mines, production facilities and those involved in manufacturing, transportation, permitting, operation/maintenance and monitoring at coal sites which is critical to ensuring the reliability of the electrical system
  • Workers who produce, process, ship and handle coal used for power generation and manufacturing
  • Workers needed for safe and secure operations at nuclear generation to include but not limited to, the broader nuclear supply chain, parts to maintain nuclear equipment, fuel manufacturers and fuel components used in the manufacturing of fuel
  • Workers at renewable energy infrastructure—including, but not limited to wind, solar, biomass, hydrogen, geothermal, and/or hydroelectric)—including:
    • Construction
    • Manufacturing
    • Transportation
    • Permitting
    • Operation/maintenance
    • Monitoring
    • Logistics
  • Workers at generation, transmission, and electric black start facilities
  • Workers at Reliability Coordinator, Balancing Authorities and primary and backup Control Centers, including but not limited to independent system operators, regional transmission organizations, and local distribution control centers
  • Mutual assistance personnel which might include workers from outside of the state or local jurisdiction
  • Vegetation management and traffic control for supporting those crews
  • Environmental remediation/monitoring workers limited to immediate critical needs technicians
  • Instrumentation, protection, and control technicians
  • Essential support personnel for electricity operations
  • Generator set support workers such as diesel engineers used in power generation including those providing fuel

Petroleum industry:

  • Workers for onshore and offshore petroleum drilling operations; platform and drilling construction and maintenance; transportation (including helicopter operations), maritime transportation, supply, and dredging operations; maritime navigation; well stimulation, intervention, monitoring, automation and control, extraction, production; processing; waste disposal and maintenance, construction and operations
  • Workers for crude oil, petroleum and petroleum product storage and transportation, including pipeline, marine transport, terminals, rail transport, storage facilities and racks and road transport for use as end-use fuels such as gasoline, diesel fuel, jet fuel, and heating fuels or feedstocks for chemical manufacturing
  • Petroleum and petroleum product security operations center employees and workers who support maintenance and emergency response services
  • Petroleum and petroleum product operations control rooms/centers and refinery facilities
  • Retail fuel centers such as gas stations and truck stops, and the distribution systems that support them
  • Supporting new and existing construction projects, including, but not limited to, pipeline construction

Natural Gas, Natural Gas Liquids (NGL), Propane, and other liquid fuels:

  • Workers who support onshore and offshore drilling operations, platform and drilling construction and maintenance; transportation (including helicopter operations); maritime transportation, supply, and dredging operations; maritime navigation; natural gas and natural gas liquid production, processing, extraction, storage and transportation; well intervention, monitoring, automation and control; waste disposal, and maintenance, construction, and operations
  • Transmission and distribution pipeline workers, including compressor stations and any other required, operations maintenance, construction, and support for natural gas, natural gas liquid, propane, and other liquid fuels
  • Natural gas, propane, natural gas liquids, and other liquid fuel processing plants, including construction, maintenance, and support operations
  • Natural gas processing plants workers, and those that deal with natural gas liquids
  • Workers who staff natural gas, propane, natural gas liquids, and other liquid fuel security operations centers, operations dispatch and control rooms/centers, and emergency response and customer emergencies (including leak calls) operations
  • Drilling, production, processing, refining, and transporting natural gas for use as end-use fuels, feedstocks for chemical manufacturing, or use in electricity generation
  • Dispatch and control rooms and emergency response and customer emergencies, including propane leak calls
  • Propane gas service maintenance and restoration, including call centers
  • Propane, natural gas liquids, and other liquid fuel distribution centers
  • Propane gas storage, transmission, and distribution centers
  • Supporting new and existing construction projects, including, but not limited to, pipeline construction
  • Ethanol and biofuel production, refining, and distribution
  • Workers in fuel sectors (including, but not limited to nuclear, coal, and gas types and liquid fuels) supporting the mining, manufacturing, logistics, transportation, permitting, operation/maintenance, and monitoring of support for resources

Waster and Waterwaste Essential Workers According to CISA

Employees needed to operate and maintain drinking water and wastewater/drainage infrastructure, including:

  • Operational staff at water authorities
  • Operational staff at community water systems
  • Operational staff at wastewater treatment facilities
  • Workers repairing water and wastewater conveyances and performing required sampling or monitoring, including field staff
  • Operational staff for water distribution and testing
  • Operational staff at wastewater collection facilities
  • Operational staff and technical support for SCADA Control systems
  • Chemical and equipment suppliers to water and wastewater systems and personnel protection
  • Workers who maintain digital systems infrastructure supporting water and wastewater operations
Getty Images Water Company
Water department workers, considered essential, work in the Mission Bay neighborhood of San Francisco, California during an outbreak of the COVID-19 coronavirus in San Francisco, California, March 19, 2020. Smith Collection/Gado/Getty Images

Transportation and Logistics Essential Workers

  • Employees supporting or enabling transportation functions, including truck drivers, bus drivers, dispatchers, maintenance and repair technicians, warehouse workers, truck stop and rest area workers, Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) employees, towing/recovery services, roadside assistance workers, intermodal transportation personnel, and workers who maintain and inspect infrastructure (including those that require cross-jurisdiction travel)
  • Workers supporting the distribution of food, pharmaceuticals (including materials used in radioactive drugs) and other medical materials, fuels, chemicals needed for water or water treatment and energy Maintenance and operation of essential highway infrastructure, including roads, bridges, and tunnels (e.g., traffic operations centers and moveable bridge operators)
  • Employees of firms providing services, supplies, and equipment that enable warehouse and operations, including cooling, storing, packaging, and distributing products for wholesale or retail sale or use. Includes cold- and frozen-chain logistics for food and critical biologic products
  • Mass transit workers and providing critical transit services and/or performing critical or routine maintenance to mass transit infrastructure or equipment
  • Employees supporting personal and commercial transportation services – including taxis, delivery services, vehicle rental services, bicycle maintenance and car-sharing services, and transportation network providers
  • Workers who are responsible for operating and dispatching passenger, commuter and freight trains and maintaining rail infrastructure and equipment
  • Maritime transportation workers, including dredgers, port workers, mariners, ship crewmembers, ship pilots and tug boat operators, equipment operators (to include maintenance and repair, and maritime-specific medical providers), ship supply, chandler, and repair companies
  • Workers including truck drivers, railroad employees and contractors, maintenance crew, and cleaners supporting the transportation of chemicals, hazardous, medical, and waste materials to support critical infrastructure, capabilities, functions, and services, including specialized carriers, crane and rigging industry workers
  • Bus drivers and workers who provide or support intercity, commuter and charter bus service in support of other essential services or functions
Getty Images Bus Driver
A bus driver wears a mask in Downtown Los Angeles on March 22, 2020, during the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. The U.S. president on March 22 said he had ordered the deployment of emergency medical stations with capacity of 4,000 hospital beds to coronavirus hotspots around the United States. Apu Gomes / AFP via Getty Images
  • Automotive repair, maintenance, and transportation equipment manufacturing and distribution facilities (including those who repair and maintain electric vehicle charging stations)
  • Transportation safety inspectors, including hazardous material inspectors and accident investigator inspectors
  • Manufacturers and distributors (to include service centers and related operations) of packaging materials, pallets, crates, containers, and other supplies needed to support manufacturing, packaging staging and distribution operations
  • Postal, parcel, courier, last-mile delivery, and shipping and related workers, including private companies
  • Employees who repair and maintain vehicles, aircraft, rail equipment, marine vessels, bicycles, and the equipment and infrastructure that enables operations that encompass the movement of cargo and passengers
  • Air transportation employees, including air traffic controllers and maintenance personnel, ramp workers, aviation and aerospace safety, security, and operations personnel and accident investigations
  • Workers who support the operation, distribution, maintenance, and sanitation, of air transportation for cargo and passengers, including flight crews, maintenance, airport operations, those responsible for cleaning and disinfection, and other on- and off-airport facilities workers
  • Workers supporting transportation via inland waterways such as barge crew, dredging, river port workers for essential goods
  • Workers who are critical to rental and leasing of vehicles and equipment that facilitate continuity of operations for essential workforces and other essential travel
  • Warehouse operators, including vendors and support personnel critical for business continuity (including HVAC & electrical engineers; security personnel; and janitorial staff) and customer service for essential functions

Public Works and Infrastructure Services

  • Workers who support the operation, inspection, and maintenance of essential public works facilities and operations, including bridges, water and sewer main breaks, fleet maintenance personnel, construction of critical or strategic infrastructure, traffic signal maintenance, emergency location services for buried utilities, maintenance of digital systems infrastructure supporting public works operations, and other emergent issues
  • Workers such as plumbers, electricians, exterminators, builders, contractors, HVAC Technicians, landscapers, and other service providers who provide services that are necessary to maintain the safety, sanitation, and essential operation of residences, businesses and buildings such as hospitals, senior living facilities, any temporary construction required to support COVID-19 response
  • Workers who support, such as road and line clearing, to ensure the availability of and access to needed facilities, transportation, energy and communications
  • Support to ensure the effective removal, storage, and disposal of residential and commercial solid waste and hazardous waste, including landfill operations
  • Workers who support the operation, inspection, and maintenance of essential dams, locks and levees
  • Workers who support the inspection and maintenance of aids to navigation and other government-provided services that ensure continued maritime commerce

Communications and Information Technology Workers


  • Maintenance of communications infrastructure- including privately owned and maintained communication systems- supported by technicians, operators, call-centers, wireline and wireless providers, cable service providers, satellite operations, Internet Exchange Points, Points of Presence, Network Access Points, backhaul and front haul facilities, and manufacturers and distributors of communications equipment.
  • Government and private sector employees (including government contractors) with work related to undersea cable infrastructure and support facilities, including cable landing sites, beach manhole vaults and covers, submarine cable depots and submarine cable ship facilities
  • Government and private sector employees (including government contractors) supporting Department of Defense internet and communications facilities
  • Workers who support radio, television, and media service, including, but not limited to front-line news reporters, studio, and technicians for newsgathering, and reporting, and publishing news
  • Network Operations staff, engineers and/or technicians to include IT managers and staff, HVAC & electrical engineers, security personnel, software and hardware engineers, and database administrators that manage the network or operate facilities
  • Engineers, technicians and associated personnel responsible for infrastructure construction and restoration, including contractors for construction and engineering of fiber optic cables, buried conduit, small cells, other wireless facilities, and other communications sector-related infrastructure. This includes the construction of new facilities and deployment of new technology as these are required to address congestion or customer usage due to the unprecedented use of remote services
  • Installation, maintenance and repair technicians that establish, support or repair service as needed.
  • Central office personnel to maintain and operate the central office, data centers, and other network office facilities, critical support personnel assisting front line employees
  • Customer service and support staff, including managed and professional services as well as remote providers of support to transitioning employees to set up and maintain home offices, who interface with customers to manage or support service environments and security issues, including payroll, billing, fraud, logistics, and troubleshooting
  • Workers providing electronic security, fire, monitoring and life safety services, and to ensure physical security, cleanliness and safety of facilities and personnel, including temporary licensing waivers for security personnel to work in other States of Municipalities
  • Dispatchers involved with service repair and restoration
  • Retail customer service personnel at critical service center locations for onboarding customers, distributing and repairing equipment and addressing customer issues in order to support individuals' remote emergency communications needs, supply chain and logistics personnel to ensure goods and products are on-boarded to provision these front-line employees
  • External Affairs personnel to assist in coordinating with local, state and federal officials to address communications needs supporting COVID-19 response, public safety, and national security

Information Technology:

  • Workers who support command centers, including, but not limited to Network Operations Command Centers, Broadcast Operations Control Centers and Security Operations Command Centers
  • Datacenter operators, including system administrators, HVAC & electrical engineers, security personnel, IT managers and purchasers, data transfer solutions engineers, software and hardware engineers, and database administrators, for all industries (including financial services)
  • Workers who support client service centers, field engineers, and other technicians and workers supporting critical infrastructure
  • Workers supporting manufacturers and supply chain vendors that provide hardware and software, support services, research and development and information technology equipment (to include microelectronics and semiconductors), HVAC and electrical equipment for critical infrastructure, and test labs and certification agencies that qualify such equipment(to include microelectronics, optoelectronics, and semiconductors) for critical infrastructure, including data centers.
  • Workers needed to preempt and respond to cyber incidents involving critical infrastructure, including medical facilities, SLTT governments and federal facilities, energy and utilities, and banks and financial institutions, securities/other exchanges, other entities that support the functioning of capital markets, public works, critical manufacturing, food & agricultural production, transportation, and other critical infrastructure categories and personnel, in addition to all cyber defense workers (who can't perform their duties remotely)
  • Suppliers, designers, transporters and other workers supporting the manufacture, distribution and provision and construction of essential global, national and local infrastructure for computing services (including cloud computing services and telework capabilities), business infrastructure, financial transactions/services, web-based services, and critical manufacturing
  • Workers supporting communications systems and information technology—and work from home solutions—used by law enforcement, public safety, medical, energy, public works, critical manufacturing, food & agricultural production, financial services, education, and other critical industries and businesses
  • Employees required in-person to support Software as a Service businesses that enable remote working, the performance of business operations, distance learning, media services, and digital health offerings or required for technical support crucial for business continuity and connectivity

Community and Government Workers

  • Workers to ensure continuity of building functions, including but not limited to security and environmental controls (e.g., HVAC), the manufacturing and distribution of the products required for these functions, and the permits and inspections for construction supporting essential infrastructure
  • Elections personnel to include both public and private sector elections support
  • Workers supporting the operations of the judicial system
  • Federal, State, and Local, Tribal, and Territorial employees who support Mission Essential Functions and communications networks
  • Trade Officials (FTA negotiators; international data flow administrators)
  • Employees necessary to maintain news and media operations across various media
  • Employees supporting Census 2020
  • Weather forecasters
  • Clergy for essential support
  • Workers who maintain digital systems infrastructure supporting other critical government operations
  • Workers who support necessary credentialing, vetting and licensing operations for critical infrastructure workers
  • Customs and immigration workers who are critical to facilitating trade in support of the national emergency response supply chain
  • Educators supporting public and private K-12 schools, colleges, and universities for purposes of facilitating distance learning or performing other essential functions
  • Staff at government offices who perform title search, notary, and recording services in support of mortgage and real estate services and transactions
  • Residential and commercial real estate services, including settlement services
  • Workers supporting essential maintenance, manufacturing, design, operation, inspection, security, and construction for essential products, services, and supply chain and COVID 19 relief efforts

Critical Manufacturing

  • Workers necessary for the manufacturing of metals (including steel and aluminum), industrial minerals, semiconductors, materials and products needed for medical supply chains, and for supply chains associated with transportation, energy, communications, information technology, food and agriculture, chemical manufacturing, nuclear facilities, wood products, commodities used as fuel for power generation facilities, the operation of dams, water and wastewater treatment, processing and reprocessing of solid waste, emergency services, and the defense industrial base
    • Additionally, workers needed to maintain the continuity of these manufacturing functions and associated supply chains, and workers necessary to maintain a manufacturing operation in warm standby
  • Workers who are necessary for the manufacturing of materials and products needed to manufacture medical equipment and personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Workers necessary for mining and production of critical minerals, materials and associated essential supply chains, and workers engaged in the manufacture and maintenance of equipment and other infrastructure necessary for mining production and distribution
  • Workers who produce or manufacture parts or equipment that supports continued operations for any essential services and increase in the remote workforce (including computing and communication devices, semiconductors, and equipment such as security tools for Security Operations Centers (SOCs) or datacenters)

Hazardous Materials

  • Workers who manage hazardous materials associated with any other essential activity, including but not limited to healthcare waste (medical, pharmaceuticals, medical material production), testing operations (laboratories processing test kits), and energy (nuclear facilities) Workers at nuclear facilities, workers managing medical waste, workers managing waste from pharmaceuticals and medical material production, and workers at laboratories processing tests Workers who support hazardous materials response and cleanup
  • Workers who maintain digital systems infrastructure supporting hazardous materials management operations

Financial Services

  • Workers who are needed to provide, process and maintain systems for processing, verification, and recording of financial transactions and services, including payment, clearing, and settlement; wholesale funding; insurance services; consumer and commercial lending; and capital markets activities)
  • Workers who are needed to maintain orderly market operations to ensure the continuity of financial transactions and services
  • Workers who are needed to provide business, commercial, and consumer access to bank and non-bank financial services and lending services, including ATMs, lending and money transmission, and to move currency, checks, securities, and payments (e.g., armored cash carriers)
  • Workers who support financial operations and those staffing call centers, such as those staffing data and security operations centers, managing physical security or providing accounting services
  • Workers supporting the production and distribution of debit and credit cards
  • Workers providing electronic point of sale support personnel for essential businesses and workers

Chemical Essential Workers

  • Workers supporting the chemical and industrial gas supply chains, including workers at chemical manufacturing plants, workers in laboratories, workers at distribution facilities, workers who transport basic raw chemical materials to the producers of industrial and consumer goods, including hand sanitizers, food and food additives, pharmaceuticals, paintings and coatings, textiles, building materials, plumbing, electrical, and paper products
  • Workers supporting the safe transportation of chemicals, including those supporting tank truck cleaning facilities and workers who manufacture packaging items
  • Workers supporting the production of protective cleaning and medical solutions, personal protective equipment, disinfectants, fragrances, and packaging that prevents the contamination of food, water, medicine, among others essential
  • Workers supporting the operation and maintenance of facilities (particularly those with high risk chemicals and/ or sites that cannot be shut down) whose work cannot be done remotely and requires the presence of highly trained personnel to ensure safe operations, including plant contract workers who provide inspections
  • Workers who support the production and transportation of chlorine and alkali manufacturing, single-use plastics, and packaging that prevents the contamination or supports the continued manufacture of food, water, medicine, and other essential products, including glass container manufacturing

Essential Workers for Defense Industrial Base

  • Workers who support the essential services required to meet national security commitments to the federal government and U.S. Military. These individuals include, but are not limited to, space and aerospace; mechanical and software engineers (various disciplines), manufacturing/production workers; IT support; security staff; security personnel; intelligence support, aircraft and weapon system mechanics and maintainers; and sanitary workers who maintain the hygienic viability of necessary facilities
  • Personnel working for companies, and their subcontractors, who perform under contract or sub-contract to the Department of Defense, as well as personnel at government-owned/contractor- operated and government-owned/government-operated facilities, and who provide materials and services to the Department of Defense, including support for weapon systems, software systems and cybersecurity, defense and intelligence communications and surveillance, space systems and other activities in support of our military, intelligence and space forces

Commercial Facilities Workers Deemed Essential

  • Workers who support the supply chain of building materials from production through application/installation, including cabinetry, fixtures, doors, cement, hardware, plumbing, electrical, heating/cooling, refrigeration, appliances, paint/coatings, and employees who provide services that enable repair materials and equipment for essential functions
  • Workers supporting ecommerce through distribution, warehouse, call center facilities, and other essential operational support functions
  • Workers in hardware and building materials stores, consumer electronics, technology and appliances retail, and related merchant wholesalers and distributors - with reduced staff to ensure continued operations
  • Workers distributing, servicing, repairing, installing residential and commercial HVAC systems, boilers, furnaces and other heating, cooling, refrigeration, and ventilation equipment

Residential and Shelter Services and Facilities

  • Workers in the dependent care services, in support of workers in other essential products and services
  • Workers who support food, shelter, and social services, and other necessities of life for needy groups and individuals, including in-need populations and COVID-19 responders (including traveling medical staff)
  • Workers in animal shelters
  • Workers responsible for the leasing of residential properties to provide individuals and families with ready access to available housing
  • Workers responsible for handling property management, maintenance, and related service calls who can coordinate the response to emergency "at-home" situations requiring immediate attention, as well as facilitate the reception of deliveries, mail, and other necessary services
  • Workers performing housing construction-related activities to ensure additional units can be made available to combat the nation's existing housing supply shortage
  • Workers performing services in support of the elderly and disabled populations who coordinate a variety of services, including health care appointments and activities of daily living
  • Workers supporting the construction of housing, including those supporting government functions related to the building and development process, such as inspections, permitting and plan review services that can be modified to protect the public health, but fundamentally should continue and serve the construction of housing (e.g., allow qualified private third-party inspections in case of a government shutdown)

Hygiene Products and Services

  • Workers who produce hygiene products
  • Workers in laundromats, laundry services, and dry cleaners
  • Workers providing personal and household goods repair and maintenance
  • Workers providing disinfection services, for all essential facilities and modes of transportation, and supporting the sanitation of all food manufacturing processes and operations from wholesale to retail
  • Workers necessary for the installation, maintenance, distribution, and manufacturing of water and space heating equipment and its components
  • Support required for continuity of services, including commercial disinfectant services, janitorial/cleaning personnel, and support personnel functions that need freedom of movement to access facilities in support of front-line employees

All these workers are carrying on in the midst of a pandemic that has claimed over 5,000 lives in the U.S. and over 48,000 globally, according to Johns Hopkins University. There have been 216,722 confirmed cases in the country with 8,672 recoveries, as the below graphic from Statista illustrates.

This infographic shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases by state.
This infographic shows the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases by state.

World Health Organization advice for avoiding spread of coronavirus disease (COVID-19)

Hygiene advice

  • Clean hands frequently with soap and water, or alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Wash hands after coughing or sneezing; when caring for the sick; before, during and after food preparation; before eating; after using the toilet; when hands are visibly dirty; and after handling animals or waste.
  • Maintain at least 1 meter (3 feet) distance from anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
  • Avoid touching your hands, nose and mouth. Do not spit in public.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or bent elbow when coughing or sneezing. Discard the tissue immediately and clean your hands.

Medical advice

  • Avoid close contact with others if you have any symptoms.
  • Stay at home if you feel unwell, even with mild symptoms such as headache and runny nose, to avoid potential spread of the disease to medical facilities and other people.
  • If you develop serious symptoms (fever, cough, difficulty breathing) seek medical care early and contact local health authorities in advance.
  • Note any recent contact with others and travel details to provide to authorities who can trace and prevent spread of the disease.
  • Stay up to date on COVID-19 developments issued by health authorities and follow their guidance.

Mask and glove usage

  • Healthy individuals only need to wear a mask if taking care of a sick person.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective when used in combination with frequent hand cleaning.
  • Do not touch the mask while wearing it. Clean hands if you touch the mask.
  • Learn how to properly put on, remove and dispose of masks. Clean hands after disposing of the mask.
  • Do not reuse single-use masks.
  • Regularly washing bare hands is more effective against catching COVID-19 than wearing rubber gloves.
  • The COVID-19 virus can still be picked up on rubber gloves and transmitted by touching your face.