June 19, 2021

Volume XI, Number 170

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California Revokes Controversial Masking Rules

As we previously reported (here), on June 3, 2021, California’s Occupational Safety and Health Standards Board (“OSHSB”) approved some controversial revisions to its Emergency Temporary Standards (“ETS”) related to COVID-19.  Among other highly-contested provisions, the updated ETS would have required even fully-vaccinated individuals to don masks indoors unless everyone in a room was fully-vaccinated.  However, before the much-maligned revised ETS could take effect, the OSHSB did an immediate about-face.

On June 9, 2021, the OSHSB convened a special meeting to consider how the new ETS aligned with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the California Department of Public Health.  At the meeting, which lasted several hours, dozens of representatives from the business community and public at large assailed the updated ETS for being out-of-touch with federal and state public health guidance.  Ultimately, the OSHSB was persuaded and voted unanimously to withdraw the revised ETS before they even went into effect.

Instead, the OSHSB will consider further revisions to the ETS, which some members of the OSHSB have indicated will more closely align with new guidelines from the California Department of Public Health (effective June 15th), which no longer require fully-vaccinated individuals to wear masks in most settings.

The OSHSB could take up this issue again as early as its next meeting, on June 17, 2021.  Stay tuned for more updates.

© 2021 Proskauer Rose LLP. National Law Review, Volume XI, Number 161
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About this Author

Anthony J Oncidi, Employment Attorney, Proskauer Rose Law Firm
Partner

Anthony J. Oncidi heads the Labor & Employment Law Group in the Los Angeles office. Tony represents employers and management in all aspects of labor relations and employment law, including litigation and preventive counseling, wage and hour matters, including class actions, wrongful termination, employee discipline, Title VII and the California Fair Employment and Housing Act, executive employment contract disputes, sexual harassment training and investigations, workplace violence, drug testing and privacy issues, Sarbanes-Oxley claims and employee raiding and trade secret protection....

310-284-5690
Phillipe Lebel labor & Employment Attorney Los Angeles Proskauer Law Firm
Associate

Philippe (Phil) A. Lebel represents employers in all aspects of employment litigation, including wage and hour, wrongful termination, discrimination, harassment, retaliation, whistleblower, trade secrets, and breach of contract litigation, in both the single-plaintiff and class-action context, at both the trial and appellate level, and before administrative agencies. Phil also represents employers in connection with labor law matters, such as labor arbitrations and proceedings before the National Labor Relations Board. Additionally, Phil counsels clients to ensure compliance with federal...

+1.310.284.4558
Law Clerk

Michelle Lappen is a law clerk in the Labor & Employment Department. She earned her J.D. from Columbia Law School, where she was an articles and submissions editor for the Columbia Journal of Law & the Arts. During law school, Michelle was a teaching fellow for the Advanced Negotiation Workshop.

310-284-4564
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