Chemical Industry Council of Illinois (CICI) Members


Mark Biel, Chief Executive Officer
[email protected] or 217/522-5805 


Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update - Employer/Employee Guidance on Chicago’s Emergency Travel Order; Pritzker Announces Changes to Phase 4 Re-Opening Plan; Update on COVID-19 Cases 

Employer/Employee Guidance on Chicago’s Emergency Travel Order:  As reported here a couple weeks ago, the Chicago Department of Public Health issued this Emergency Travel Order directing travelers entering or returning to Chicago from states experiencing a surge in new COVID-19 cases to quarantine for a 14-day period from the time of last contact within the identified state. This Order includes both Chicago residents returning from travel to a designated state, and travelers arriving in Chicago from a designated state. The Order went into effect this Monday July 6, 2020. 

Further, this link will take you to FAQs regarding the Emergency Travel Order and how it applies to Chicago residents and visitors.  As an Essential industry with Essential employees, please closely review the “Exceptions” listed under FAQs section. 

Attached to this Update is an example letter adapted from one of CICI’s member companies where “essential employees” may be asked to show proof they are exempt from the City of Chicago’s quarantine order. Please share/review with your HR and legal folks and use as you see fit.

In addition, a few practical points to keep in mind (hopefully reassuring to a traveler):

  • Being stopped and/or impeded is highly unlikely due to the ‘honor system’ nature of the self-quarantine order.
  • The letter is addressed “To: CPD and CPDH” because they are technically the only entities that are empowered to enforce the public health order because it is a Chicago order. Both departments have great experience over the past several months with understanding these types of orders, and that “essential workers” are exempt. That is also to say, federal entities (such as the TSA) are not likely going to ask for any such letter, etc. while traveling.
  • While the worker is exempt, I would treat the letter as a passport/airline ticket. In the sense that they should carry it with them on their person when traveling from Chicago and especially back into Chicago, as that is the only technical thing required by the order to signify they are essential, and thus exempt from the ‘quarantine order’ if asked by Chicago police or public health.

Pritzker Announces Changes to Phase 4 Re-Opening Plan: CICI included this in the Update earlier this week but needs repeating.  Since the state has experienced an uptick in the number of positive cases, reaching over 1,300 new cases in the last 2 days, Governor Pritzker announced some changes to Phase 4 of the state’s re-opening plan. In particular, the state’s 4 regions have now been broken up into 11 regions (including the following counties) as follows:

1 - NORTH: Boone, Carroll, DeKalb, Jo Daviess, Lee, Ogle, Stephenson, Whiteside, Winnebago

2 - NORTH-CENTRAL: Bureau, Fulton, Grundy, Henderson, Henry, Kendall, Knox, La Salle, Livingston, Marshall, McDonough, McLean, Mercer, Peoria, Putnam, Rock Island, Stark, Tazewell, Warren, Woodford

3 - WEST-CENTRAL: Adams, Brown, Calhoun, Cass, Christian, Greene, Hancock, Jersey, Logan, Macoupin, Mason, Mason, Menard, Montgomery, Morgan, Pike, Sangamon, Schuyler, Scott

4 - METRO EAST: Bond, Clinton, Madison, Monroe, Randolph, St. Clair, Washington

5 - SOUTHERN: Alexander, Edwards, Franklin, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Marion, Massac, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Saline, Union, Wabash, Wayne, White, Williamson

6 - EAST-CENTRAL: Champaign, Clark, Clay, Coles, Crawford, Cumberland, De Witt, Douglas, Edgar, Effingham, Fayette, Ford, Iroquois, Jasper, Lawrence, Macon, Moultrie, Piatt, Richland, Shelby, Vermillion

7 - SOUTH SUBURBAN: Kankakee, Will

8 - WEST SUBURBAN: DuPage, Kane

9 - NORTH SUBURBAN: Lake, McHenry

10 - SUBURBAN COOK: Suburban Cook

11 - CHICAGO: City of Chicago

Governor Pritzker also announced that included in these changes are potential metrics to determine when the spread of the virus in a region requires additional mitigations such as a sustained increase in 7-day rolling average (7 out of 10 days) in the positivity rate and one of the following severity indicators:

  • Sustained 7-day increase in hospital admissions for a COVID-19 like illness
  • Reduction in hospital capacity threatening surge capabilities (ICU capacity or medical/surgical beds < 20%)
  • OR three consecutive days averaging 8% positivity rate

Some mitigation strategies in higher risk settings, like indoor bars and restaurants, will be automatically applied in a region that meets resurgence criteria to prevent rapid spread of COVID-19.

The state’s overall positivity rate remains steady at 3% but may be higher in some of the state’s 11 other regions.

Update on COVID-19 Cases: The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) is reporting 159,344 positive cases of COVID-19 in Illinois, an average increase of 1,325 new cases per day since reported here 2 days ago, July 15.  In total, 2,166,299 tests have now been conducted in Illinois for the virus, an average increase of 43,349 tests per day since July 15.  Again, the state’s positivity rate still holds at 3%.

Unfortunately, IDPH is reporting a total of 7,272 deaths, an average increase of 23 per day since July 15.

You can also check where these cases are occurring at the State of Illinois COVID-19 website which also contains more information on this outbreak. Also, IDPH has a case breakdown of the number of positive cases in Chicago and each county relative to the number of fatalities.  The IDPH website also now includes a breakdown of the cases under each zip code in the state.

For information on other states and countries, John Hopkins University has developed this website that provides invaluable resources at a one-stop location detailing testing and tracing trends, timelines of COVID-19 policies, and interactive maps.

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