There appears to be light at the end of the COVID-19 tunnel. Vaccinations have been increasing and cases and deaths are decreasing. Along with this some states are easing restrictions with some places opening up fully and activities like attending live sporting events are slowly returning. Assuming this progress continues, businesses will have a handful of difficult, but welcome, issues to manage as we return to normal.
One issue is for businesses to decide when to lift requirements for masks. To a certain degree this will be handled by state mandates but as these are lifted business will want to do the same while avoiding any risk of increased exposures at their work places for their employees and customers. This will be reminiscent of the early days of the pandemic, as business had to decide what made sense for them before states began to act. Part of the consideration will be whether customers feel safe, as we ease our way back into normal interactions.
Another question will be for businesses potentially requiring a form of vaccine passport, something that is already coming up with the aforementioned return to live sports, as some venues are making special provisions for fans who show proof of vaccination. However, there are also concerns over the use of passports, and it is yet to be determined how widespread the use may be.
Business will also need to consider how to handle vaccinated employees. Cal OSHA recently provided updated guidance providing that business do not need to exclude fully vaccinated employees from the work place after an exposure if they are asymptomatic.
With the constant changes that can impact a business, an experienced legal team can help navigate a difficult time for businesses, particularly with the ever-changing landscape for companies during the current crisis.