Designation of COVID-19 as Airborne Infection Disease Under NY HERO Act Requires Implementation of Employers’ Exposure Prevention Plans

September 7, 2021

On September 6, 2021, Governor Kathy Hochul announced that the Commissioner of Health has designated COVID-19 as a “highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health” under the NY HERO Act. Accordingly, New York employers are now required to implement their NY HERO Act Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plans.

Governor Hochul’s announcement is available here. According to the NY HERO Act Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Standard, employers must now:

• Immediately review their plan, and update, if necessary, to incorporate current information, guidance and requirements;

• Finalize and promptly activate the plan;

• Provide each employee with a copy of the activated plan, and post a copy in a visible and prominent location at all worksites; and

• Ensure the plan is effectively followed by assigning enforcement responsibilities, monitoring/maintaining exposure controls, and regularly checking for updated information and guidance provided by the New York State Department of Health and CDC.

The New York State Department of Labor’s NY HERO Act website, which notes the current designation, and contains the Prevention Standard, model plans and other information, is available here.

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.