On Friday, December 17, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit dissolved the Fifth Circuit’s stay of the Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). The Department of Labor (DOL) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) can now resume implementing this vital workplace health standard. The ETS establishes requirements to protect employees of large employers (100 or more employees) from the risk of contracting COVID-19 in the workplace.
To account for any uncertainty created by the stay, OSHA is exercising enforcement discretion with respect to the ETS compliance dates. To provide employers with sufficient time to come into compliance, OSHA will not issue citations for noncompliance with any requirements of the ETS before January 10 and will not issue citations for noncompliance with the standard’s testing requirements before February 9, so long as an employer is exercising reasonable, good faith efforts to come into compliance with the standard.
The Department of Labor will provide two briefings this week with senior DOL and OSHA officials to discuss recent developments and updated guidance related to the rule. A prerecorded webinar on the content of the ETS is available here. Attendees are encouraged to review guidance and information from OSHA ahead of the briefing and submit questions using the RSVP links below.
ETS Briefing schedule:
More information on the ETS can be found at these links: