President Biden Announces Employer COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate Plan
Late last week, President Biden announced new measures his administration will undertake to continue to combat COVID-19. Included in those measures with an aim of “vaccinating the unvaccinated,” the president stated the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) that “will require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require any workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work.”
This mandate is of particular importance to the ready mixed concrete industry, as concrete plants fall under the jurisdiction of OSHA. While there remain a lot of unanswered questions, what we have heard from OSHA is:
- The ETS and pertinent details will be published within the coming weeks (no specific date);
- When the ETS is published, it will become effective immediately;
- OSHA will NOT be allowing stakeholders to provide input before the ETS is published/effective;
- The ETS will become effective immediately in states that are under OSHA jurisdiction, but the 22 states that run their own safety plans will have 30 days to implement;
- The 100 employee threshold is applied companywide, NOT by individual facility/location;
- The ETS will likely NOT cover remote/physically isolated employees (no specifics yet);
- Testing details, timing, verification, payment, paid time off (PTO), refusals, boosters, etc. will be addressed in the ETS;
- The mandate and testing requirements will mesh with any current requirements and laws already in effect; and
- OSHA plans to publish a final rule on the issue within six months, which will take into consideration stakeholder comments.
Click here to read the president’s remarks from last week and here to review the president’s six-pronged COVID-19 action plan. NRMCA will continue to monitor this issue and advocate for beneficial industry outcomes with the Administration and OSHA.
For more information, contact Kevin Walgenbach at firstname.lastname@example.org.