The New York State Department of Labor (NYSDOL) has issued its model Health and Essential Rights (HERO) Act plans for all employers for protecting workers from airborne infectious diseases.
You can find the model plan for personal services employers such as dentists here: New York State Department of Labor Model HERO Act Personal Services Exposure Prevention Plan
NYSDOL has also issued the NYSDOL regulatory standard to be followed for protecting workers from airborne infectious diseases. You can find the NYSDOL regulatory standard here: New York State Department of Labor Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Standard
Employers are free to adopt the plan provided by NYSDOL or establish an alternative plan that meets or exceeds the NYSDOL standard’s minimum requirements. The plan only kicks in when the New York State Commissioner of Health has designated an airborne infectious disease as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health.
Currently, while employers must adopt plans as required by the law, as of the current date no designation has been made by the Commissioner of Health and plans are not required to be in effect. Employers are required to provide employees a copy of the adopted airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plan and post the same in a visible and prominent location within each worksite.
For more information on the New York HERO Act, use the following link: https://dol.ny.gov/ny-hero-act
Important dates are:
August 6, 2021
: Within 30 days of the NYSDOL’s publication, employers must either adopt the model protocol applicable to their industry or create their own airborne disease prevention plan that meets or exceeds the minimum requirements of the law.
September 5, 2021
: Within 60 days of the NYSDOL’s publication, employers must provide the adopted or equally stringent safety protocols to their employees.