Chamber Advocacy Around Employer Vaccine Mandate

This week, the U.S. Department of Labor’s OSHA sent its Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) on the vaccine mandate for large employers (those with 100 or more employees) to the White House Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review. While the rule could go into effect after approval immediately, it may provide a period of time for employers to understand the rule and come into compliance. Since Vermont has a state plan, the Vermont Chamber is advocating for the following three requests:

  1. We encourage the Vermont Department of Labor’s VOSHA to take the full 30 days allowed to review the federal ETS which will also provide time for employers to understand the full scope of the rule and align resources to comply with the ETS.
  2. We urge VOSHA not to add any additional requirements or levels of compliance as we anticipate this change will be a significant challenge already.
  3. Allowing varied testing options for employers will be a key to compliance. The constricted availability of tests and slowed timeline for returning results will have a detrimental impact on an employer’s ability to facilitate this mandate. The recent news that the supply chain for tests will be adjusted to allow for greater access is certainly welcome. We hope that the federal ETS allows for rapid testing and we encourage VOSHA to endorse that direction if provided for in the federal rule.

As information becomes available for the ETS and more specifically, VOSHA’s response, the Vermont Chamber will disseminate this information to employers to ensure strong compliance. We are proud of Vermont’s standing as a national leader in vaccination rates and will continue to do our part to maintain healthy and safe workplaces. If you have questions or further information for our team, please connect with our Membership Engagement Director Sophia Yager by email.

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