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EEOC updates COVID-19 steerage: Employment & Labor Insider

This isn’t probably the most thrilling employment legislation information, however the Equal Employment Alternative Fee has issued some updates to its technical help on COVID-19. In keeping with an EEOC media launch, the modifications have been prompted by the top of the general public well being emergency.


You will be glad to know that the modifications aren’t radical.

Listed here are the highlights, with references to the related part of the technical help. If you’re nonetheless having COVID-related points in your office, you would possibly wish to learn the complete steerage, which is on the market right here. The updates that the EEOC thought have been significantly vital are in daring under.

24 updates from the EEOC on COVID-19

  • If an worker calls in sick, it is nonetheless okay to ask whether or not the worker has COVID or signs of COVID. (A.1)
  • Employers ought to proceed to depend on steerage from the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention about COVID signs. (A.2)
  • Typically, taking an worker’s temperature is a “medical examination,” which suggests it will probably’t be performed except “job-related and in step with enterprise necessity.” But when CDC or different public well being steerage says a fever is “a doable indication of an infection,” then it is all proper to take the worker’s temperature. (A.3)
  • If CDC steerage recommends that workers with COVID or COVID signs keep dwelling for a sure time frame, it is all proper for the employer to require its workers to remain out of labor for the beneficial interval. (A.4)
  • It is okay for an employer to ask all workers coming into the office whether or not they’ve been recognized with COVID or examined for COVID. If in step with “CDC-recommended isolation protocols,” the employer can bar workers with COVID or COVID signs from the office. (A.8)
  • If the employer desires to require all workers, or explicit workers, to be examined for COVID or to have their temperatures taken, these measures have to be “job-related and in step with enterprise necessity.” Once more, let the CDC be your information. (A.9)
  • You possibly can’t ask an worker whether or not his or her members of the family have COVID or signs of COVID. That might violate the Genetic Info Nondiscrimination Act. (A.10)
  • If an worker refuses to cooperate with the employer’s lawful COVID-screening measures, the employer can require that worker to remain out of the office. However the EEOC recommends asking what the priority is. If confidentiality, then the employer might be able to get cooperation by reassuring the worker that medical info will stay confidential. If the worker wants an affordable lodging, the employer ought to focus on that with the worker and think about offering it. (A.11)
  • If an worker studies feeling sick at work, it is okay to ask whether or not the worker has COVID or COVID signs and to take no matter actions are beneficial by the CDC. (A.12)
  • It is okay to maintain an worker’s COVID-related medical info within the worker’s common medical file (with non-COVID-related medical info) — which, as I am positive you all know, have to be saved separate from the worker’s personnel file. (B.1)
  • It is okay to display screen candidates for COVID signs after a conditional supply of employment has been made, however even earlier than if the employer requires it of all people coming into the worksite. (C.1)
  • It is okay to offer a short lived cheap lodging for COVID whereas determining what sort of long-term lodging can be wanted. (D.7)
  • It is okay to ask workers to request cheap lodging that they might want once they return to the office. (D.8)
  • Pandemic-related circumstances (for instance, provide chain points) could also be taken into consideration when figuring out whether or not a selected cheap lodging could be an “undue hardship,” but when so, the employer and worker ought to work collectively to attempt to discover different lodging. (D.10, 11)
  • Affordable lodging for lengthy COVID would possibly embrace “a quiet workspace, use of noise cancelling or white noise gadgets, and uninterrupted worktime to handle mind fog; different lighting and decreasing glare to handle complications; relaxation breaks to handle joint ache or shortness of breath; a versatile schedule or telework to handle fatigue; and removing of ‘marginal capabilities’ that contain bodily exertion to handle shortness of breath.” (D.19)
  • The top of the general public well being emergency doesn’t imply that employers can robotically give up making cheap lodging which will nonetheless be wanted. (D.20)
  • When offering harassment coaching, employers ought to think about protecting harassment of workers who’re nonetheless carrying masks or taking different COVID-related precautions. The coaching may cowl harassment of workers who’ve been exempted from getting vaccinated as a consequence of a non secular objection. (E.2)
  • Pregnant workers who do not wish to be vaccinated towards COVID needs to be handled the identical as those that do not get vaccinated due to disabilities or non secular beliefs. (Okay.2)
  • Employers can nonetheless supply limitless incentives to workers to be vaccinated towards COVID, so long as the employer or its agent just isn’t the one administering the vaccines. Vaccine info have to be saved confidential. (Okay.16)
  • Lengthy COVID can be a “incapacity” throughout the that means of the People with Disabilities Act if it “considerably limits” a “main life exercise” or “main bodily perform,” even when it lasts only some months. But when the signs are extra like chilly or flu signs and “resolve in a matter of weeks,” then lengthy COVID just isn’t a incapacity. You’ve in all probability figured this out already, however figuring out whether or not a case of lengthy COVID is a incapacity would require an “individualized evaluation.” (N.2, N.4)
  • An individual who has or had prior to now lengthy COVID may have a “file of” a incapacity or be “considered” having a incapacity beneath the ADA. (N.5, N.6)
  • It is okay to request medical documentation earlier than granting a request for cheap lodging of lengthy COVID. (N.11)
  • An employer can voluntarily accommodate lengthy COVID even when it is not required to take action. Duh. (N.12)

That is it! Because of the EEOC for unexciting steerage. Boring is sweet.



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