OSHA COVID-19 Vaccine/Testing Mandate on Temporary Hold

Biden Administration Expected to Challenge

In response to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit November 12 decision to temporarily halt (issue a stay on) the recent OSHA COVID-19 emergency temporary standard (ETS), OSHA announced on November 17 that it “has suspended activities related to the implementation and enforcement of the ETS pending future developments in the litigation.” However, OSHA also noted that it “remains confident in its authority to protect workers in emergencies” and is considered likely to challenge the current pause on its ETS implementation and enforcement before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, where the 34 cases filed against the OSHA ETS—including AGC’s—have been consolidated. It is not clear as to what the outcome regarding the ETS will be.

Pending the outcome of litigation, employers should continue to review the ETS and plan for actions they will take in the event the ETS is implemented. It is worthy to note that this current suspension of OSHA’s ETS does not change compliance requirements for those employers who are considered federal contractors covered separately by that vaccine mandate. The vaccination mandates for federal contractors are still in place and have not been impacted due to the court’s action in the OSHA ETS case.

For more information, visit AGC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit.

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