Federal OSHA Threatens to Repeal State OSHA Plans Over COVID-19 Healthcare ETS

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (federal OSHA) has reportedly threatened to repeal several states’—Arizona, South Carolina and Utah—state OSHA plans because they have not adopted federal OSHA’s COVID-19 healthcare emergency temporary standard (ETS) issued on June 17. State plans are federal OSHA-approved workplace safety and health programs operated by individual states or U.S. territories. There are currently 22 state plans covering both private sector and state and local government workers. When federal OSHA issues a new standard, state plans usually have six months to adopt the new standard. State plans, however, have only 30 days to adopt an ETS. This situation between federal OSHA and state OSHA plan states could foreshadow how federal OSHA handles disputes that may be yet to come when it issues its broader COVID-19 Testing ETS impacting private employers with 100 or more employees.  

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