Employers Are Moving Ahead with Mandates: Staffing Firms Should Get on Board
Federal mandate or no federal mandate, some employers may require employees to be vaccinated or get regular testing. Employers making use of temporary employees may expect staffing companies to get those employees vaccinated, especially in the health care and hospitality industries. Employers are struggling to find full-time workers and may rely on temporary help to sustain them short term.
Staffing firms need to consider whether it is in their best economic interests to require vaccinations, putting themselves a step above their competition. It’s also unsettled legally and legislatively, at the state level, whether COVID should be considered a work-related illness for purposes of workers’ compensation.
The Occupational Health and Safety Administration—otherwise referred to as Fed-OSHA—has suspended its COVID vaccine emergency temporary standard (ETS) until further notice. States, including California, have followed suit, suspending any further discussion on guidance. One size does not fit all, but according to the suspended ETS, staffing firms who place employees at a host employer location “only the staffing agency would count these jointly employed workers for purposes of the 100-employee threshold for coverage under this ETS.” That being said, even without a mandate, a host employer may require the staffing agency to ensure that temporary employees are fully vaccinated or tested weekly and wear face coverings.