We are losing patience. The US president Joe Biden once famously said to unvaccinated Americans that he would direct OSHA to establish a Covid-19 mandate for large private employers. OSHA published the complete text of the rule today (Nov. 4,).
Companies with over 100 employees will have to show proof of vaccination and test their employees for Covid-19 every week as a condition to employment. Companies that fail to adhere to the emergency temporary standard (ETS), could face fines up to $14,000 and public shame.
Biden also increased a mandate for federal workers and contractors. They have until December 8 to either get vaccinated, or lose their jobs. Weekly testing is not an option.
OSHAs vaccine mandate rules
These are the top facts about the ETS that private-sector employers need to know:
January 4th is the effective date for this new rule. Employees must be fully vaccinated by January 4. Anybody who tests positive for a virus must be removed from the workplace immediately.
Workers who are not vaccinated and choose to have their blood tested every week must wear masks while on the job.
Remote workers and people who only work outside are not eligible for the ETS.
Part-time workers and seasonal workers, who are not employed through a staffing agency, will be included in the 100-employee limit. (See FAQs here about the scope and application of the rule.)
The new ETS is required for staffing agencies employing 100 or more people.
Employers must provide paid time for workers to get vaccinated. However, they may charge employees the cost of weekly testing.
Workers may apply for religious and medical exemptions.
Employers must offer time off to get vaccinated and enforce the mask rules starting Dec. 5.
The full text of these rules can be viewed below and here. A summary is available here.