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Stay on Vax Mandate Lifted, Prepare for Enforcement in the New Year

Stay on Vax Mandate Lifted, Prepare for Enforcement in the New Year

On December 17, 2021, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit lifted the temporary stay on the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s (OSHA) Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). Now that the stay, which delayed OSHA’s enforcement has been lifted, housing providers who employ 100 employees or more should begin to evaluate their COVID-19 vaccination, testing and mask policies for staff in accordance with the ETS.

Here’s what rental owner and management firms with 100 employees or more need to know about the ETS:

  • A “covered employer” is any employer with 100 employees or more, counting both part-time and full-time staff.
  • Employers with 100 employees or more spread amongst several locations are covered under the ETS, even if fewer than 100 employees work at each location.
  • Under the ETS, a covered employer must develop, implement and enforce a mandatory COVID-19 vaccination policy or adopt a policy requiring employees to either get vaccinated or elect to undergo weekly COVID-19 testing and wear a face covering at work in lieu of vaccination.
  • Covered employers must abide by additional paid-time/paid-leave, recordkeeping and notification requirements according to the ETS. To learn more about all of the new responsibilities for covered employers, review OSHA’s resources: Fact SheetSummary, and OSHA’s Rule in the Federal Register.

Housing providers should begin to prepare for OSHA’s ETS to become effective on January 4, 2022. OSHA announced that they will begin to enforce compliance of the ETS on January 10, 2022, and testing requirements on February 9, 2022. However, covered owner and management firms should ensure they are exercising reasonable, good faith efforts to come into compliance well in advance of these dates. Additional operational guidance is forthcoming.

NAA will continue to monitor the implementation of the ETS and work with the Administration to address the industry’s concerns. For more information, please reach out to Sam Gilboard, NAA’s Senior Manager of Public Policy.