Vax Madness

I want to stick my head in the sand and ignore all the craziness I’m hearing about vaccination mandates. How do I know what actually affects my employees?  [click to read more …]

A Shot in the Arm

President Biden has announced a plan that will affect companies with 100 or more employees. It appears those companies will either need to mandate vaccinations for employees or have unvaccinated employees tested weekly. This hasn’t taken effect yet and the final ruling or regulation will come from OSHA (the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration) or the state versions of OSHA, such as Cal/OSHA.  [click to read more …]

Revised Workplace Rules

The COVID merry-go-round keeps spinning and we’re getting dizzy. Thanks to the increasing number of positive cases we’re getting with the Delta variant, we’re now going retro.  [click to read more …]

Cal/OSHA Re-Revised Rules

Once again, we have revised regulations regarding masks at work. Cal/OSHA (California Occupational Safety and Health Agency) approved new regulations only two weeks ago and almost immediately pulled them back for further review. The biggest problem was their regs still weren’t in alignment with the CDC (Centers for Disease Control). The revised regulations are now in effect.  [click to read more …]

Latest Cal/OSHA Rules

I’m so confused about COVID precautions as my employees are returning to the office. What’s the latest?  [click to read more …]

Masks On or Off

“I know many places are no longer requiring masks but I’m confused about how to make it safe for employees.”

Your HR Survival Tip

COVID’s evolution has kept all of us confused for nearly 1.5 years. The latest information from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) is great news for those who have been vaccinated. However, masks and distancing are still strongly recommended for those refusing or unable to get vaccinated. Also, California is still enforcing the mask mandate until June 15th so don’t drop those masks too early.

While some companies are no longer requiring masks at work, you need to decide for yourself whether or not this is in your favor. California still has several laws and regulations in place making it the company’s responsibility to pay for quarantines and report cases to workers’ comp carriers. If you no longer require masks, will your risk and costs increase? Those vaccinated will be protected but what about the unvaccinated?

Some companies are choosing to follow the mask mandate in general. However, if an employee chooses to share their vaccination proof with the company, they will be allowed to work without a mask. This means some vaccinated employees will  [click to read more …]

Vaccination and Mask Update

Even as more people are getting vaccinated, we still struggle with how to handle the COVID-related questions and policies in the workplace.  [click to read more …]

Things to Think About

There are several items of interest right now. We decided to provide a short paragraph about each so you have some awareness of the latest things to think about!

Remote Workers — We are hearing about a couple of things that are newer requests. One is a request for companies to pay a portion of the employee’s rent since you’re now requiring them to work from home. The other is overtime pay for calls after hours… when the after-hours timing is due to time zone differences because employees aren’t necessarily local anymore. Deciding to change part or all of your office to fully remote means you need to consider the fact that you’ve shifted costs from your company to the employee. Since it’s not supposed to cost the employee anything to work for you, plan to reimburse employees for actual added costs in addition to reimbursements for the inconveniences an employee experiences by having part of their home become their office.

COVID-19 Supplemental Paid Sick Leave — California’s Governor Newson has signed SB 95, which requires up to 80 hours of paid sick leave for employees off work due to COVID reasons. This only applies to companies of 25+  [click to read more …]

American Rescue Plan Act of 2021

The American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) was just signed into law last week. This article will only discuss two items from this new law, the FFCRA updates and the employee retention credit through CARES.

The Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) initially began last year on 4/1/2020. This law required employers to notify employees of potential paid time off when they had COVID symptoms, when they couldn’t work due to lack of childcare, and a few other reasons. FFCRA expired on 12/31/2020 but was then extended to 3/31/2021. The extension removed the employer mandate requiring notification to employees and payment for COVID-related time off. However, the tax credit was still available to those companies who chose to continue offering the pay to employees.

ARPA has extended FFCRA to 9/30/2021. In addition, while not mandated, companies will continue receiving the tax credit if they pay employees for FFCRA time off. The most interesting aspect of this new law was the reset of hours for the time off. This means if an employee had previously received the allowed 80 hours of FFCRA sick pay, the clock starts over as of 4/1/2021, and the previously paid time doesn’t count against the employee’s  [click to read more …]

COVID Risk Levels

“I keep hearing about low risk, high risk, etc. related to COVID-19 but I don’t know what they mean.”

Your HR Survival Tip

Many of the things we’ve heard relating to COVID-19 have been confusing. This is because the laws and regulations keep changing as the infection rates increase or more is learned about COVID. The Federal Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) has provided the following to help us:

Lower Exposure Risk — Given to jobs that do not require close contact with other people. This level is typical of remote workers (i.e., those working from home during the pandemic); office workers who do not have frequent close contact with coworkers, customers, or the public; and healthcare workers providing only telemedicine services. Medium Exposure Risk — Given to jobs that require either frequent close contact or sustained close contact with other people in areas where COVID is transmitted from community to community. Typical of this level are workers who have frequent or sustained contact with coworkers or the public, including under close working conditions outdoors or in well ventilated indoor workplaces; and those living in shared housing facilities. High Exposure Risk — Given to jobs with a potential for exposure to  [click to read more …]