By Kristen Wakulchuk

Posted

Since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic, you’ve probably been laser-focused on local, regional, and state restrictions, as well as guidelines issued by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But you can’t afford to let the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) rules fall by the wayside, now or ever. 

What’s New with EEOC?

Adherence to antidiscrimination laws is a hotbed issue due to recent news developments and controversies, but they also have pandemic-related implications. 

On June 17, the EEOC clarified that the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) prohibits mandatory Covid-19 antibody testing as a prerequisite for an employee to return to work following the pandemic. Even at this time, antibody testing is considered a medical exam and not job-related or consistent with business necessity, according to the commission. 

  • An antibody test shows whether someone once had Covid-19. But, according to the CDC, this test should not be used to make a return-to-work decision about an employee – and the EEOC adopted this recommendation as a result. 
  • The EEOC has already stated that COVID-19 viral tests, which determine whether or not someone has an active case of Covid-19, are permissible under the ADA. Applying this standard, you can take steps to determine if workers entering your workplace have the virus. And, you should still require that employees observe infection control practices such as masks, social distancing, and hand washing to prevent COVID-19 transmission. 
  • The EEOC will continue to closely monitor CDC recommendations and could update its position at any time in response to CDC changes. 
  • The EEOC’s pandemic publication was written during the H1N1 outbreak but is still relevant as it identifies ADA and Rehabilitation Act principles. It is notable, however, that this publication was updated as of March 19 to address COVID-19 information. 
  • The commission offers a wide spectrum of COVID-19 related materials in addition to this publication. 

Partner With a Company You Can Trust!

Staying up to date on the laws, guidelines, and regulations that apply to your business has never been easy. But today’s issues and the adjustment to a new reality following the Covid-19 outbreak have taken this challenge to an unprecedented level. By partnering with Chane Solutions, you’ll be alerted of relevant news and announcements as they arise  in addition to industry-leading employment screening, drug testing, and compliance strategies to keep your company and its people healthy and safeguarded. Contact us today to learn more. 

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