NYS DOL Publishes Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Standard

Earlier this week, the NYS Department of Labor (DOL) published their “Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Standard”, a general “Model Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plan,” and several industry specific model prevention plans as well. The model plan specific to Manufacturing and Industry is available here. These are now available on the DOL’s website. The model plans are currently available in English, with a Spanish version available soon, as required by law.

PIA members in New York State now have 30 days, or until August 5, 2021, to either adopt one of the model plans or develop an alternative plan that meets or exceeds the requirements in the prevention standard. Employers that choose to develop an alternative plan must adopt a plan pursuant to an agreement with the collective bargaining representative if unionized, or, if non-union, with meaningful participation of employees, for all elements of the plan. The alternative plan must be tailored and specific to the hazards in our industry and worksites of the employer.

Please note, although employers are required to adopt a compliant airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plan, such plans only go into effect when the New York State Commissioner of Health designates an airborne infectious disease as a “highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public.” The DOL’s website currently provides that as of the current date, no such designation has been made, and therefore the airborne infectious disease prevention plans are not currently required to be in effect.

Employers should carefully review these requirements and the applicable model prevention plan and determine whether to adopt one of the model plans or develop and adopt a compliant alternative prevention plan.

Contact Tim Freeman, President of Printing Industries Alliance, with any questions at (716) 691-3211 or tfreeman@PIAlliance.org

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