The Biden administration has withdrawn its vaccine-or-test mandate for private employers with 100 or more employees, effective today. As a result, the 1.9 million impacted employers will not be bound by the emergency temporary standard (ETS) that was issued by the Department of Labor’s Occupational Health and Safety Administration on Nov. 5, 2021.
The ETS would have mandated that covered employers implement and enforce a written policy ensuring that employees either get vaccinated or undergo weekly testing and wear face coverings.
The rule, which had been met with court challenges since the get-go, was on life support after it was blocked earlier this month by the U.S. Supreme Court, which declared that OSHA had overstepped its authority.
OSHA announced that although the ETS has been pulled as an enforceable rule, it remains a proposed rule, and the agency will continue “prioritizing its resources on finalizing a permanent COVID-19 Healthcare Standard.”
In the meantime, employers remain subject to a patchwork of state and local COVID-19 safety laws and must comply with existing OSHA rules, including the COVID-19 National Emphasis Program and the General Duty Clause as it pertains to COVID-19 safety in the workplace.
If you have questions about OSHA compliance or if you are looking to contest an OSHA citation or prepare for the OSHA inspection process, give us a call. The OSHA lawyers at Sheehy, Ware, Pappas & Grubbs have deep expertise in OSHA matters ranging from compliance to OSHA lawsuits.