NY HERO Act Prevention Plan Deadline is August 5th!

July 20, 2021

This is a reminder that pursuant to the NY HERO Act, by August 5, 2021, all private New York employers are required to adopt an Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plan for the workplace. Employers may either adopt the model plan prepared by the New York Department of Labor (DOL), or create their own plan that meets the applicable prevention standard.  Employers who opt to create their own plan should be sure to do so with the “meaningful participation” of their employees or by agreement with their employees’ collective bargaining representative. The DOL has published a prevention standard that is applicable to all employers, a model plan that will be applicable to many employers, and additional model plans applicable to particular industries, including agriculture, construction, delivery services, domestic workers, emergency response, food services, manufacturing and industry, personal services, private education, private transportation, and retail.

Employers will recognize these standards and model plans as similar to the safety plans they were required to enact under the New York Forward guidelines. For example, the standards require employers to create plans for health screenings, face coverings, physical distancing, hand hygiene, and cleaning and disinfection, among other requirements.  Although employers must adopt a prevention plan by August 5, 2021, the plans need not actually go into effect until an airborne infectious disease is designated by the New York State Commissioner of Health as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health. In other words, employers must adopt a plan now, which will go into effect upon a designation by New York State. Despite the continuing COVID-19 pandemic, no designation is currently in effect, and prevention plans are not required to be in effect.

Please further note that employers have 30 days from adoption of a prevention plan to provide a copy of the plan to employees and post in a visible and prominent location in each worksite.

For more information on this issue or other employment matters, please contact:

Carol M. Goodman at +1 212 592 1465 or [email protected]
K. Heather Robinson at +1 973 274 2006 or [email protected]
Meaghan Roe at +1 212 592 1632 or [email protected]
Silvia Stockman at +1 212 592 1583 or [email protected]

© 2021 Herrick, Feinstein LLP. This alert is provided by Herrick, Feinstein LLP to keep its clients and other interested parties informed of current legal developments that may affect or otherwise be of interest to them. The information is not intended as legal advice or legal opinion and should not be construed as such.