Your browser is unsupported

We recommend using the latest version of IE11, Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari.

Response to Coronavirus COVID-19

GLC-OHS's Call to Action for Public Health Heading link

As the coronavirus crisis continues, essential workers’ needs will increasingly become more urgent, and stark. There is an enormous responsibility to take care of our workers and provide the tools needed by workers who are risking their lives by having to continue to work outside the home. The actions of Illinois government and the public health resources in the State in the coming weeks could prevent larger outbreaks in essential workplaces and lay the foundation for an organized strategy that can also be scaled up when workers in non-essential industries begin to return to work.

Read more here

UIC’s COVID-19 Public Health Response Heading link

As the world addresses the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, faculty and researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) School of Public Health are playing leading roles in the response in Chicago, Cook County and the State of Illinois.  Refer to their website here for the latest updates and resources, including checking for symptoms, contacting your local health department and accessing COVID-19 fact sheets.  See the most recent article from UIC’s Center for Healthy Work on Why Paid Sick Leave is an Effective Treatment Against Coronavirus  here.

Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website for information about how to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and what to do if you get sick.

Other resources will be shared below to help protect the health and safety of workers and communities.

COVID-19 Guide for Workers in Illinois Heading link

Pandemic COVID-19 presents an unprecedented challenge for workers in Illinois and across the nation. The UIC Center for Healthy Work, Great Lakes Center for Occupational Health and Safety, and the Policy, Practice and Prevention Research Center are providing information about benefits available to those employed in Illinois to ensure the safety and health of Illinois workers and their families.

The guide was published in English and Spanish and was up-to-date as of June 5, 2020.


Read the COVID-19 guide for Illinois workers here.

Resources for Protecting Workers Heading link

The Great Lakes Center for Occupational Health and Safety is committed to protecting and advancing worker health and safety. We’ve compiled a list of resources available to help protect workers.

  • The National Institutes of Health launched this new website that contains health and safety resources for workers who may be at risk of exposure to COVID-19.
  • The National Council for Occupational Safety and Health has complied a list of resources for front line workers. Check them out here.
  • The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has developed interim guidance to help prevent worker exposure to COVID-19 here.
  • The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) highlights resources available for the protection of workers on their page here.
  • The MassCOSH developed this COVID-19 Toolkit for Essential Workers.
  • ITUC/Hazards coronavirus workplace health resource hub can be found here.
  • The National Employment Law Project has resources for unemployed and essential workers here.

Healthcare Personnel

Retail Workers

Gig Workers

Warehouse & Temp Workers

Domestic Workers

  • The National Domestic Workers Alliance has compiled resources here.
  • The Illinois Domestic Workers Coalition is promoting Paid Sick Leave. Learn more here.
  • Arise Chicago FAQ on Domestic Workers Rights can be found here.

Worker Rights

  • Your employer is responsible for providing proper training, relevant personal protective equipment, and record-keeping of possible exposures and infection. Legal Aid at Work: Coronavirus FAQs
  • Arise Chicago’s Workers Rights Manuel in English, Spanish and Polish can be found here.


  • UIC SPH EOHS Weekly Seminar
    • COVID-19: Experiences from the Front Lines Slide can be found online here.
  • National Council on Occupational Safety and Health
    • Coronavirus: What Workers Need to Know,  featuring worker leaders and occupational health experts.  Recordings in English and Spanish and slides in English and Spanish. 
  • Women’s Voices for the Earth
    • COVID-19, Cleaning Products and Your Health. Recording can be found here.
  • COVID-19 Conversations Hosted by the American Public Health Association and the National Academy of Medicine
    • See more information here.
  • Labor Occupational Health Program, UC Berkeley
    • Protecting Workers in the Service Industry. Recording can be found here.
  • North Carolina Occupational Safety and Health Education and Research Center
    • COVID-19 Respiratory Protection Webinar Series. Registration and past sessions can be found here.
  • Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs (AFOP) and Children in the Field Campaign hosted a webinar on farmworker health during the coronavirus pandemic. A recording can be found here.
  • National Safety Council
  • Partners for Dignity & Rights
    • Essential Workers to Essential Needs: Conversations from the Frontlines! You can view a recording on facebook and youtube.
  • Occupational Health Clinics for Ontario Workers (OHCOW) webinars looking at the science, solutions and successes around this pandemic can be found here.

Resources for Businesses & Employers Heading link

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Resources for Businesses and Employers include:

American Industrial Hygiene Association (AIHA):

  • AIHA’s guidance for cleaning your workplace can be found here.
  • If you had to shut down your facility here is guidance for reopening.
  • Back to Work Safely resources for every industry can be found here.

American Public Health Association (APHA):

  • APHA’s created a new page with up-to-date and easy to digest info on COVID-19, including reopening. For more information visit their website here.

WHO Guidance:

OSHA/HSS Guidance:

Food and Drug Administration (FDA):

  • FDA Enforcement Policy for Face Masks and Respirators During the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) Public Health Emergency can be found here.

Other Resources:


Illinois Resources Heading link

Illinois-specific information can be found at the Illinois Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 website. Illinois Department of Public Health. Phone 1-800-889-3931 or Email: SICK@ILLINOIS.GOV for additional questions.

COVID-19 Guide for Workers in Illinois can be found here.

Arise Chicago created this tri-lingual guide: Working under Covid-19: How to return to a safe workplace in Illinois

Unemployment benefits are available to some people in Illinois whose unemployment is attributable to COVID-19. Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES) recently adopted emergency rules to try to make the unemployment insurance system as responsive to the current situation as possible. Learn more.

  • Apply for unemployment assistance, call 800-244-5631 or click here.
    • Click here for assistance on how to fill out unemployment assistance forms.
  • Apply for SNAP (financial assistance for food) here.

The Illinois Coalition for Immigrants and Refugee Rights created this document of resources for Immigrants.

Chicago Resources Heading link

Chicago-specific information can be found at the Chicago Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 website. Chicago Department of Public Health. Phone: 312-746-4835 or Email: for additional questions. This website will be updated with additional guidance as it becomes available.

  • Click here for information about rental assistance. This program assists with rent payment but not security deposits, and the city still requires people to show up in person to apply. Chicago residents can apply at one of the six Community Service Centers.
  • Chicago Public Schools are offering free meals to families while schools are closed. Click here for more information.
  • Click here for Greater Chicago Food Depository resources.
  • Northwest Food Partners Network compiled this COVID-19 Food Delivery Resource Guide.
  • The Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund is working in conjunction with the City of Chicago to support local non-profits providing aid to vulnerable populations.
  • Chicago Jobs Council COVID-19 FAQ & Resources.
  • Legal Aid Chicago Updates During Covid-19 can be found here.
  • The Chicago COVID-19 Hardship and Help page was created by Chicago organizers Kelly Hayes and Delia Galindo to offer a simple way for people in the Chicago area to ask others for assistance during this crisis.
  • Chicago Beyond has compiled additional resources that can be found here.

Respirator Fit Testing using Sweet &/or Bitter Solutions by Dr. Roy T. McKay at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center Heading link

Other Respirator Resources:

stop the spread of germs poster

Preventing the Spread of COVID-19