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Court Temporarily Blocks OSHA Vaccination Mandate---Secretary of Labor Says Truck Drivers are Excluded

November 8, 2021

On Friday MMTA announced the Occupational Safety & Health Administration had released its Emergency Testing Standard (ETS) requiring businesses with more than 100 employees to ensure they are vaccinated or to test unvaccinated employees for the COVID virus each week. Much has happened in just the few days since first announced.

Labor Secretary says Truck Drivers are Excluded:

OSHA’s rule states that employees who work 100% alone or outdoors, so long as their indoor contact with other employees or customers is minimal, are exempt. Late last week, U.S. Labor Secretary Marty Walsh tried to clarify the mandate's impact by saying, "If you're a truck driver and you're outside, you're in a cab driving by yourself, this doesn't impact you. If you're a worker outside working in the area, this doesn't impact you."

This exemption does not apply to all facets of trucking (office administrative staff, mechanics, etc.) are still covered under the rule. Also, your exempt drivers do not reduce the aggregate number of employees to render an employer under the 100-count threshold.

Court Temporarily Blocks Mandate:

On Saturday, the United States Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit issued a stay temporarily halting the ETS. The Court cited “grave statutory and constitutional concerns” in its order. The court called for an accelerated briefing on why a permanent ban should not be granted. The government must file a brief by today justifying the basis for the rule. In addition, there are multiple legal challenges occurring in other Federal courts of appeals.
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