As featured in #WorkforceWednesday:  This week, government agencies at both the federal and state level are preparing for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA’s) vaccine emergency temporary standard (ETS).

Employer Anticipation Builds for OSHA ETS

All eyes are on DC as the wait continues for OSHA’s COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing ETS, for employers with 100 or more employees. Last week, the Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) held more than 100 meetings with stakeholders to aid in its review of OSHA’s proposed ETS. OIRA completed its review on Monday, and the ETS is expected to be released imminently.

OSHA Cracks Down on States

OSHA has sent warning letters to Arizona, Utah, and South Carolina regarding the agency’s COVID-19 health care ETS, released in June of this year. These three states operate their own OSHA state plans but have yet to adopt a health care ETS that is at least as protective as the agency’s. Some see OSHA’s warning as a sign of increased enforcement with the coming vaccine ETS.

EEOC Updates Guidance for Religious Accommodations

Last week, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) added a section to its COVID-19 guidance focused on religious exemptions for mandatory vaccine policies. Read more about the updated guidance.

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