Decision Time for OSHA’s COVID-19 ETS

This morning, (Friday, Jan. 7), the U.S. Supreme Court will consider the legal challenge to OSHA’s COVID-19 emergency temporary standard (ETS), the vaccinate-or-test rule that impacts employers with 100 or more employees. (Members may listen to oral arguments online beginning at 10 a.m.) The court is expected to make a swift decision.

Reuters notes that the court has already rejected several religious-based challenges to state vaccine requirements. Today will be the first test of the federal government’s authority to issue its own COVID-19 vaccine mandates.

While the ETS is technically in effect now — due to a federal appeals court ruling last month — OSHA has said it will wait until Monday, Jan. 10 to begin issuing ETS citations. The agency says it will not issue citations for its testing requirement before Feb. 9 “so long as an employer is exercising reasonable, good-faith efforts to come into compliance with the standard.” 1/7/2022