The Division of Occupational Safety and Health is considering changes to the ETS. This includes, among other things, definitional changes and exemptions.
Most notably, there are proposed exemptions for a 100%, fully vaccinated workforce. The proposed changes include substituting the term "exposed workplace" with "exposed group" and changing the definition of "worksite." A proposed exception to "COVID-19 exposure" includes when specificed PPP is worn consistent with CCR 5144. There is a proposed definitional change to a "COVID-19 case."
The proposed rules will likely minimally impact most employers. The definitional changes are consistent with updated guidance interpreting the ETS and/or align more with definitions in AB 685. The exception to the COVID-19 exposure rule will likely primarily impact higher risk industries and serve to minimize workplace exclusions. Employers may face legal and logistical challenges in acheiving a 100% fully vaccinated workforce. Employers may want to consider vaccination policies in light of these proposed changes.
Exempting work locations from §§ 3205, 3205.1, and 3205.2 when 100% of onsite employees are fully vaccinated. Exempting employee transportation from the provisions of §3205.4 when 100% of vehicle occupants are fully vaccinated; and Exempting employers from some communication and training requirements for employees who are fully vaccinated.