As the COVID-19 pandemic shifts into a new phase, the rules and regulations surrounding the virus and the workplace continue to evolve. This Employment Alert provides a brief overview of the recent changes to the rules and regulations applicable to New York employers.
On February 9, 2022, Governor Kathy Hochul announced that beginning on Thursday, February 10, 2022, indoor businesses are no longer required to ensure that all entrants are vaccinated or that they wear face masks. This announcement effectively ends the mask mandate put in place in December 2021.
On January 13, 2022, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a stay of the implementation and enforcement of the COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard, published on November 5, 2021 (86 Fed. Reg. 61402) (“ETS”). This means that the January 10, 2022 and February 9, 2022 deadlines for implementation of the ETS for employers with 100 or more employees are stayed pending further judicial action.
On January 4, 2022, the New York State Department of Health (“DOH”) issued Interim Updated Isolation & Quarantine Guidance amending the quarantine and isolation periods for individuals who are symptomatic, test positive, or are exposed to COVID-19. The DOH has expressly stated that this new guidance is interim guidance and additional requirements may be added. Nevertheless, employers should immediately review their current COVID-19 policies and procedures and make all necessary changes to ensure they reflect this new guidance.…