Biden administration issues Executive Orders, many aimed at stopping the spread of COVID-19

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Below is an excerpt from a statement issued by the White House on January 20, 2021. The entire fact sheet can be found on AHRA’s Regulatory Resources page. This excerpt is focused on the administration’s COVID-19 related efforts. Watch for additional LINK articles on Executive Orders focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.

Please note that this is an excerpt from a White House Document and not authored by the AHRA. We have no political affiliation, nor affinity, but are seeking to share current information about the public health crisis and efforts to mitigate it.

Executive Actions Address the COVID-19 Pandemic, Provide Economic Relief, Tackle Climate Change, and Advance Racial Equity

Hours after taking the oath of office, President Biden will take a historic number of actions to deliver immediate relief for families across America that are struggling in the face of converging crises. He will sign a combination of executive orders, memoranda, directives, and letters to take initial steps to address these crises, including by changing the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, providing economic relief, tackling climate change, and advancing racial equity.

Below are more details about how President Biden’s executive actions will deliver relief for American families and address the crises we face.


Launch a “100 Days Masking Challenge” and Leading by Example in the Federal Government

Today, President Biden is launching his “100 Days Masking Challenge,” asking the American people to do their part – their patriotic duty – and mask up for 100 days. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has found that masks “are a critical tool in the fight against COVID-19 that could reduce the spread of the disease.” President Biden is also doing his part by issuing an Executive Order today requiring masks and physical distancing in all federal buildings, on all federal lands, and by federal employees and contractors. He is also asking the Department of Health and Human Services and Center for Disease Control to engage with state, local, Tribal, and territorial officials to implement masking, physical distancing, and other CDC public measures to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Re-Engage with the World Health Organization (WHO) to Make Americans and the World Safer

Today, President Biden will take action to cease the previous Administration’s process of withdrawing from the World Health Organization — an entity that is critical to coordinating the international response to COVID-19, advancing preparedness for future epidemics and pandemics, and improving the health of all people. The Biden-Harris Administration – with Dr. Tony Fauci as Head of Delegation – will participate in the WHO Executive Board meeting that is ongoing this week. Dr. Fauci will deliver remarks as Head of Delegation to the Executive Board on January 21. Once the United States resumes its engagement with the WHO, the Biden-Harris Administration will work with the WHO and our partners to strengthen and reform the organization, support the COVID-19 health and humanitarian response, and advance global health and health security.

Structure Our Federal Government to Coordinate a Unified National Response

The federal government must act swiftly and aggressively to combat COVID-19. President Biden will sign an Executive Order creating the position of COVID-19 Response Coordinator, who will report directly to the President and be responsible for coordinating all elements of the COVID-19 response across government, including managing efforts to produce, supply, and distribute personal protective equipment, vaccines, and tests. In addition, this Executive Order restores the NSC Directorate for Global Health Security and Biodefense to focus on domestic and global biological threats, play a critical role in stopping the COVID-19 pandemic, and prevent future biological catastrophes.


The president’s day one executive actions will protect workers from COVID-19, including by ensuring that federal employees and contractors wear masks and follow other CDC guidelines, setting an example for employers around the country.

They will provide relief to American workers who have lost their jobs or had their hours or wages slashed through no fault of their own, by extending the pause on student debt and the eviction and foreclosure moratorium.

They will help spur the growth of American manufacturing and supply chains, competitiveness of our industries, and creation of good union jobs by directing agencies to consider revising vehicle fuel economy and emissions standards, methane emissions standards, and appliance and building efficiency standards.

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