COVID-19 is no longer considered an airborne infectious disease under New York’s HERO Act, so most employers aren’t required to enforce their COVID-19 safety plans.
With the exception of employers in healthcare and congregate care settings, as of March 17, 2022, New York employers are no longer required to follow coronavirus-related safety mandates.
However, law firm Proskauer Rose states that private employers must still follow mandatory COVID-19 vaccine requirements for their employees.
And while there’s no designation of an airborne infectious disease currently in effect, under the HERO Act New York employers are still required to:
- create an airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plan
- provide a copy of the plan to employees within 30 days of creating one
- provide a copy to new employees upon hiring
- post the plan in each worksite where employees can view it, and
- update the plan as needed.
Employees can still request safety committees
There’s also a requirement for employers with 10 or more employees to allow those employees to create a joint labor-management workplace safety committee.
That’s not an affirmative obligation for employers to create a safety committee, but employees must be allowed to create such a committee if they request one.
The state’s Department of Labor is currently reviewing public comment for a proposed rule on safety committees.