OSHA Withdraws COVID-19 Vaccination-or-Testing ETS

On January 25, OSHA revoked its COVID-19 vaccination-or-testing emergency temporary standard (ETS) applicable to private businesses with 100 or more employees in light of the recent U.S. Supreme Court decision.

This is a clear legal victory for AGC of America and its Construction Advocacy Fund-financed lawsuit challenging the ETS. The U.S. Supreme Court agreed with AGC’s argument, among others, that OSHA overreached and exceeded its authority under the law.

Although this lawsuit against OSHA is over, AGC of America continues to press forward in another Construction Advocacy Fund-financed lawsuit against the federal contractor vaccine mandate, currently under nationwide stay. And the association’s broader efforts to support the construction industry’s voluntary encouragement for the use of COVID-19 vaccines continue with more construction-specific resources and a series of Construction Advocacy Fund-financed public service ads found on its COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit webpage. 

In addition to withdrawing the ETS, it is AGC’s understanding that the agency will no longer pursue a permanent infectious disease standard broadly applicable to private businesses, ending the threat of such a mandate enduring forever. The agency will, however, pursue a more tailored permanent standard applicable to healthcare.

AGC members should continue to follow OSHA’s COVID-19 guidance, as the agency plans general enforcement of COVID-19 protocols via the Occupational Safety and Health Act’s General Duty Clause.

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