Special thanks to guest contributor, Melissa Allchin

Corporate travel came to a standstill early in the pandemic, however with strong vaccination rates and the easing of quarantine requirements, companies are starting to plan to resume travel for meetings, conferences and employee incentives.

In this Quick Chat video, Baker McKenzie’s Labor and Employment and Global Immigration and Mobility partners discuss key considerations for employers before they proceed with business travel arrangements for those in the US and beyond.

Click here to watch the video.

We’re thrilled to announce the release of a new edition of The Global Employer: Focus on Global Immigration & Mobility.

In this 2022 edition, you’ll find:

An introduction providing “hot topic” information employers need to know now related to the movement of employees, focusing on large-scale global immigration, employment, compensation and tax issues.

Over 35 country chapters detailing specific immigration requirements related to various types of assignments.

Click here to request a complimentary copy for yourself or your colleagues.

On October 6, 2021, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti signed into law one of the strictest vaccine mandates in the country (Ordinance No. 187219, the “Ordinance”), requiring proof of COVID-19 vaccination for patrons to enter a wide range of private establishments–more than just bars, wineries, or breweries. Employers who are covered by the Ordinance–which is similar to ordinances in New York, West Hollywood, and San Francisco–will have to quickly determine what changes they’ll need to make in order to meet the Ordinance’s requirements less than a month from now.

Here’s what businesses need to know now about the Ordinance.

Where does this matter?

The Ordinance applies to businesses operating within the city limits of Los Angeles, but not those in unincorporated areas of L.A. County.  North Hollywood?  Yes!  Santa Monica? No!

Continue Reading No Shoes, No Shirt, No Jab = No Entry: Proof of Full Vaccination Required in Los Angeles for Patrons to Enter Private Establishments

As companies call employees back to the physical workplace, more employers are electing to implement mandatory vaccination policies to keep employees safe amidst the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant. In turn, some employees are seeking accommodations, asserting that disabilities or religious beliefs prevent them from being vaccinated. Employers should develop consistent standards for handling such requests.

In this Quick Chat video, our Labor and Employment lawyers share guidelines for employers to consider as they encounter requests for accommodations from mandatory vaccination policies.

Click here to watch the video.

We are pleased to share a recent World Economic Forum article, “Work can be better post-COVID-19. Here’s what employers need to know,” authored by Stephen Ratcliffe and Julia Wilson that discusses the following:

  • The return to the workplace
  • Hybrid working as the new norm
  • Fostering inclusion, diversity and equity (IDE)

Click here to continue reading this Article.

This article was originally posted in the World Economic Forum.

Federal contractors and subcontractors in the US now have guidance on mandatory vaccines for employees, while private US employers with 100 or more employees are still waiting for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to issue an Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS). On September 24, 2021, the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force–the task force created by President Biden to provide workplace guidance to heads of federal agencies during the COVID-19 pandemic–released its COVID-19 Workplace Safety: Guidance for Federal Contractors and Subcontractors (the Guidance). The Guidance primarily addresses vaccination requirements for employees of covered federal contractors, but it also imposes mask and physical distancing requirements for covered contractor worksites (including for employees, visitors and others) and requires contractors to designate a person (or persons) to coordinate COVID-19 workplace safety efforts at their workplaces.

Continue Reading No Fair! US Federal Contractors Get Guidance on Mandatory Vaccines While Other Private Employers Continue to Wait

On September 9, 2021, President Biden announced that he has directed the Department of Labor’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to promulgate an emergency temporary standard requiring all US companies with 100 or more employees to ensure that their workers are either vaccinated against COVID-19 or tested  weekly before coming to work. In an 11-page memo, “Path Out of the Pandemic” (the Memo), the President announced a “six-pronged, comprehensive national strategy” to combat COVID-19, including the OSHA emergency rule.

The White House estimates the OSHA emergency rule will apply to more than 80 million private-sector workers.

Here’s what US private employers need to know right now.
  • The emergency rule will require all US employers with 100 or more employees to either ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated or require any workers who remain unvaccinated to produce a negative test result on at least a weekly basis before coming to work. The emergency rule will undergo a process of expedited review before taking effect, and will be issued without public comment.
  • The emergency rule is expected in the coming weeks, and will take effect shortly thereafter.
  • Once the rule is in place, businesses who violate its provisions could face penalties of up to $14,000 per violation.
  • According to the memo, businesses will be required to provide workers with paid time off, both to get vaccinated and to recover from side effects from vaccination.

As part of the plan, President Biden announced he will require all health facilities accepting Medicare or Medicaid funding to vaccinate their workforces.

He also signed two executive orders on September 9 addressing federal employees and contractors. The first Executive Order requires all federal employees to be vaccinated, with no option to be regularly tested instead (the only exceptions to vaccination being those “required by law”)–a method the President reportedly hopes state governments and private companies will adopt. The second is an Executive Order “directing that this standard be extended to employees of contractors that do business with the federal government” (according to the Memo), indicating that federal contractors will also be required to ensure their workers are vaccinated, with no testing option.

The President’s plan also calls on large entertainment venues, like sports arenas, large concert halls, and other venues where large groups of people gather to require that their patrons be vaccinated or show a negative test for entry.

For now, employers should stay tuned for additional updates pending the issuance of OSHA’s emergency rule, and check out our other recent resources on mandatory vaccination:

As always, for assistance with any employment related needs, contact your Baker McKenzie employment attorney.

We are pleased to share a recent International Employment Lawyer article, “Are US Employers That Don’t Mandate Vaccines Now At Risk?” by Stephanie Priel, Robin Samuel, and Autumn Sharp. The article discusses risks companies that are not mandating COVID-19 vaccines may face, as well as steps those companies can take to meet their health and safety-related workplace obligations to employees.

Click here to view the article.