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Q&A: Do Fully Vaccinated Employees Still Need to Wear Masks?

On Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced that fully vaccinated people no longer have to wear masks—unless it’s required by federal, state, local, territorial, or tribal laws.

So that means vaccinated employees don’t have to wear masks in the workplace anymore, right? Well, not exactly. 

In order to stay compliant and safe, employers are waiting for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) to review safety guidelines. Until then, OSHA declared that employers should continue to follow the CDC’s workplace mask and social distancing guidelines regardless of whether employees are vaccinated. 

Since OSHA’s rules and regulations directly shape how employers handle workplace safety, any of their statements override the CDC’s. And while CDC guidance indicates that the workplace can operate safely with a mix of vaccinated and unvaccinated workers, employers should still abide by OSHA’s declaration. 

Employers can still choose to require masks and social distancing, along with requesting proof of vaccinations or asking employees about vaccination status. Organizations can also devise employee access policies to buildings, events, and workspaces based on vaccination status.

Can employers require employees to get vaccinated? Click here to find out.

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