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Biden Administration Facing Criticism as OSHA Fails to Deliver COVID-19 Workplace Safety Standard

  • Department of Labor is several weeks past a March 15 deadline to submit any emergency temporary standard for COVID-19 workplace safety
  • Delay raises criticism that it could endanger frontline essential workers or increase the risk of workplace virus transmission
  • Some critics question the need for an emergency temporary standard as vaccination efforts advance

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

The Biden administration is facing criticism from Democrats and labor advocates as an emergency temporary standard for COVID-19 workplace safety has been delayed well beyond its March 15 deadline.

President Joe Biden issued an executive order on his second day in office directing the Secretary of Labor, acting through the Assistant Secretary of the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, to determine revised guidance to employers and determine if any additional standards in the workplace are necessary.

  • The Department of Labor says it has submitted a draft of the proposal to the administration
  • Several Democratic congressmen have criticized the delay, saying it results in a greater potential for COVID-19 transmission in the workplace or risks to frontline essential workers
  • Critics of an emergency standard say it is no longer necessary as COVID-19 vaccination efforts proceed

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