OSHA Releases National COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate

OSHA released its highly anticipated vaccine mandate for employers with 100+ employees.

Employers with 100 or more employees must adopt a policy under which all employees are “fully vaccinated” (meaning two weeks after a one-shot vaccination, such as Johnson & Johnson, or two weeks after the second dose of two-shot vaccination, such as Pfizer or Moderna) by January 4, 2022.


  • Employers must have policies in place by December 5, 2021, to provide paid time off to employees to get vaccinated and recover from any side effects, and to require non-vaccinated workers to be masked in the workplace (limited exceptions).
  • As of January 4, 2022, employees who are not fully vaccinated but who enter the workplace will be required to be tested weekly for COVID-19 (self-administered/self-read tests are NOT acceptable unless observed by the employer or an authorized telehealth designee).
  • Employers will be required to maintain proof of vaccination, and a roster of employees’ vaccination status, available for inspection upon request by the Department, and maintained as long as the ETS is in effect.

For independently owned franchises, the franchise counts its own employees only. For multi-unit franchises, they may be regarded as a “single company” if they “handle safety matters as one company.” OSHA has also issued FAQs regarding how employers would meet the 100-employee threshold, preemption of conflicting state and local laws, the obligation of states that administer their own state-run OSHA plans, and proof of acceptable employee documentation.

It is believed that over 84 million employees will be subject to this rule, though about 3/5s of subject workers are already vaccinated. Oregon has the authority to create its own rules related to occupational health and safety, but OR-OSHA is likely to adopt and/ or consider many of the federal vaccine rule components below.

Source: Oregon Restaurant & Lodging Association; OSHA