From the HR Pros / June 2021

On June 10, the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) issued new COVID safety guidance, applicable to most employers, and an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) applicable to healthcare employers.

Guidance for Most Employers
OSHA summarized its guidance this way:
“Unless otherwise required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, most employers no longer need to take steps to protect their fully vaccinated workers who are not otherwise at-risk from COVID-19 exposure. This guidance focuses only on protecting unvaccinated or otherwise at-risk workers in their workplaces (or well-defined portions of workplaces).”

Essentially, OSHA has said it is aligned with the CDC; fully vaccinated workers do not need masks or to practice social distancing. Workers who are not fully vaccinated should keep their masks on and continue to maintain social distance.

If you operate in a state, county, or city with more stringent masking or safety requirements, those requirements must still be followed.

You can read the guidance here.

Emergency Temporary Standard for Healthcare Employers
Healthcare employers are subject to an Emergency Temporary Standard, which has the same force as a regulation. Employers should treat the ETS as a requirement rather than a recommendation. You can read the ETS here.

A useful flowchart to help you determine if you are covered by the ETS is available here.