Government Connection

Labor Chief Walsh Puts Hold on OSHA Virus Rule for More Analysis

Release of OSHA’s Covid-19 emergency temporary standard is on hold at the request of Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh. Secretary Walsh has reviewed the rulemaking and requested that it should be updated to reflect the latest scientific analysis of the state of the disease. It’s been more than three weeks since the March 15 deadline President Joe Biden’s executive order had set for DOL’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration to decide whether a standard was needed; the order directed the agency to issue a standard if its answer was that Covid-19 posed a grave danger to workers. The standard is expected to require employers to develop and implement infection control and prevention plans that follow guidance from the CDC. It also could address other issues, such as paying workers if they’re forced to quarantine and ensuring workers could return to jobs after their absence. Critics of the rulemaking say the rising number of vaccinated workers make the regulation unnecessary. However, it still appears likely that an ETS will be issued in the near future.

April 07, 2021

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