Today, the Biden Administration published its vaccine mandate for businesses with 100 or more employees.
The mandate, which set a January 4 deadline for compliance, comes from OSHA as an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) and applies to businesses with at least total 100 employees (100 employees firm- or corporate-wide at any time the ETS is in effect).
Employers must determine the vaccination status of each employee, but the rule does not apply to:
- Employees who do not report to a workplace where other individuals such as coworkers or customers are present
- Employees while they are working from home
- Employees who work exclusively outdoors
This is referred to as a “soft” mandate as businesses may choose to require unvaccinated employees provide a negative COVID-19 test at least on a weekly basis as an alternative, however, unvaccinated employees must also wear a mask when indoors or when occupying a vehicle with another person for work purposes.
The rule mandates employers provide paid time off to workers to get vaccinated and paid leave for employees to recover from any side effects from the vaccine.
OSHA plans to do inspections and agents may enter workplaces to check for compliance. OSHA may fine a company $136,532 for willful violations or about $14,000 for a single violation, and an employer may receive multiple violations.
“After two months of waiting and wondering, this complicated mandate puts job providers in an incredibly difficult position as they work to manage significant talent and supply chain issues during a hectic fourth quarter,” said Andy Johnston, Vice President of Government Affairs for the Grand Rapids Chamber. “While we object to this government mandate on free enterprise, we will work to help employers and employees through this and call on state and federal regulators to be flexible and apply common sense whenever possible.”
Find resources below to learn more about the mandate and implementation.
The Grand Chamber will share more information as it becomes available. Questions? Contact Andy Johnston, Vice President of Government Affairs at andy@ grandrapids.org.
OSHA Resources on the Mandate
Resources on Implementation