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Federal OSHA Workplace Vaccination Standards Back in Motion

 December 17, 2021 | Cole Karr

The federal Occupational Health and Safety Administration's (OSHA) emergency temporary standard (ETS) requiring workplace vaccinations for certain employers has been re-instated.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit reversed Friday a lower court's nationwide injunction, which was instituted on November 6. OSHA's ETS requires private employers with 100 or more employees to implement policies for workers to be fully vaccinated or submit weekly tests in lieu of vaccination. The ETS requires employers to implement policies by December 5 and for workers to be fully vaccinated by January 4, 2022; however, it is unknown at this time whether OSHA will adhere to its original timeline or provide delays to allow additional time for compliance following the lower court's injunction.

Federal OSHA's ETS will impact some of special districts in the 22 states with an OSHA-approved state plan – including California, Oregon, South Carolina, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. The state plans require state occupational safety agencies to adopt OSHA's federal regulations overseeing private employers as-is or implement a more stringent regulation, and they require the standards to extend to public sector employers.

Click here to read more about the federal ETS.

The case is likely to be heard on appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Stay tuned to NSDC for additional developments on the federal ETS and watch out for news from your individual state’s agency covering workplace safety

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