The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) says it is “seeking comment” about whether businesses with fewer than 100 employees should be subject to the COVID-19 vaccine and testing mandate it is implementing on big businesses.
OSHA’s requirement will force businesses with more than 100 employees to mandate vaccines or else their employees will need to wear masks and be tested for COVID-19 weekly. It will go into effect Jan. 4.
OSHA VACCINE MANDATE TO HIT LARGE EMPLOYERS JAN. 4, WITH HEFTY FINES FOR NONCOMPLIANCE
But according to a summary released by OSHA, it appears to be considering implementing the rule for small businesses as well.
“OSHA is confident that employers with 100 or more employees have the administrative capacity to implement the standard’s requirements promptly, but is less confident that smaller employers can do so without undue disruption,” the summary says. “OSHA needs additional time to assess the capacity of smaller employers, and is seeking comment to help the agency make that determination.”
The same language is included in the Federal Register page for the vaccine rule.
A Department of Labor spokesperson told FOX Business Friday that it is indeed considering whether to extend the vaccine or mask and testing mandate to businesses with fewer than 100 workers.
“OSHA chose a 100-employees threshold at this time because the agency is confident that employers with 100 or more employees have the administrative capacity to implement the standard’s requirements promptly,” the spokesperson said. “Because the emergency situation required OSHA to act quickly, the information immediately available to the agency did not allow it to confidently assess the impact on smaller firms.”
The spokesperson added: “OSHA will consider whether to extend the rule to smaller firms in the public rulemaking that begins with the publication of this emergency rule.”