OSHA delayed enforcement of the vaccination requirements of the ETS until January 10, 2022, and will wait until February 9, 2022, to start enforcing the optional testing component of the ETS. Both of those dates are quickly approaching.
Although the ETS is moving forward for now, the litigation process continues, as the parties challenging the ETS immediately appealed the court’s decision to the U.S. Supreme Court. While the Supreme Court will ultimately determine the ETS’ fate, in the interim, OSHA has made it clear that it intends to move forward with full enforcement. As a result, employers should prepare for compliance with the ETS.
Employers should review their preparedness using the checklist below:
By January 10, 2022, covered employers must have the following in place:
- Determine whether you will adopt a vaccination only policy, or a vaccination plus testing policy.
- Establish a vaccination policy. OSHA provides a sample mandatory vaccination policy and a sample vaccination or testing/facing coverage policy at https://www.osha.gov/coronavirus/ets2
- Determine vaccination status of each employee, obtain acceptable proof of vaccination, maintain records and a roster of vaccination status.
- Provide support for employee vaccination.
- Require employees to promptly provide notice of positive COVID-19 test or COVID-19 diagnosis.
- Remove any employee from the workplace who received positive COVID-19 test or COVID-19 diagnosis.
- Ensure employees who are not fully vaccinated wear face coverings when indoors or when occupying a vehicle with another person for work purposes.
- Provide each employee information about the ETS; workplace policies and procedures; vaccination efficacy, safety and benefits; protections against retaliation and discrimination; and laws that provide for criminal penalties for knowingly supplying false documentation.
- Report work-related COVID-19 fatalities to OSHA within 8 hours and work-related COVID-19 in-patient hospitalizations within 24 hours.
By February 9, 2022:
- Ensure employees who are not fully vaccinated and who have indoor contact with others as part of their jobs are tested for COVID-19 at least weekly or within 7 days before returning to work if away from the workplace for a week or longer.
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