OSHA on Friday issued a COVID-19 Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) that requires employers with 100 or more employees to mandate a COVID-19 vaccination or weekly testing.

Companies impacted by the ETS have until January 4, 2022 to have all employees fully vaccinated or undergoing weekly testing. The ETS does not require employers to pay for testing, although some employers may be required to pay for testing to comply with other laws, regulations, collective bargaining agreements, or other collectively negotiated agreements.

OSHA stated that the ETS also requires employers to determine the vaccination status of each employee, obtain acceptable proof of vaccination status from vaccinated employees, maintain records and a roster of each employee’s vaccination status, require employees to provide prompt notice when they test positive for COVID-19 or receive a COVID-19 diagnosis, remove employees from the workplace regardless of vaccination status in the case of a positive result, not allow employees that have tested positive to return to work until they meet required criteria, ensure each worker who is not fully vaccinated is tested for COVID-19 at least weekly (if the worker is in the workplace at least once a week) or within seven days before returning to work (if the worker is away from the workplace for a week or longer), and ensure that, in most circumstances, each employee who has not been fully vaccinated wears a face covering when indoors or when occupying a vehicle with another person for work purposes.

Instances of noncompliance could face fines of up to $13,000 for each violation or $136,000 for each willful violation.

The ETS is effective immediately.

OSHA has updated its webpage with access to further information on the ETS. OSHA’s news release can be found here. OSHA’s fact sheet on the ETS can be found here, along with a summary and FAQs.

 

 

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