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Federal Updates

EEOC Adds New FAQs Regarding COVID-19 Vaccinations

On May 28, 2021, the EEOC updated its "What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws" webpage. The revised guidance confirms that an employer may require all employees returning to a physical worksite to be vaccinated for COVID-19. However, the employer must provide reasonable accommodation for employees who do not get vaccinated for COVID-19 because of a disability or a sincerely held religious belief, practice or observance.

An accommodation is deemed reasonable if it does not create undue hardship for the employer. Examples of reasonable accommodations include an unvaccinated employee wearing a face mask at the worksite, working at a social distance from coworkers or nonemployees, working a modified shift, getting periodic tests for COVID-19, being given the opportunity to telework or accepting a reassignment.

An employer may offer an incentive to employees to voluntarily provide documentation or other confirmation that they received a vaccination. This could include certification from a pharmacy, public health department or other healthcare provider. However, the incentive cannot be so substantial as to be coercive. Unfortunately, the EEOC did not provide greater detail or examples of acceptable incentive amounts or limits.

Finally, all employee documentation related to vaccinations must be maintained confidentially.

What You Should Know About COVID-19 and the ADA, the Rehabilitation Act, and Other EEO Laws »

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