Yesterday, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) finally issued its language on the Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) mandating vaccinations for certain employees as directed by President Biden back in September. Under the mandate, covered employers – which essentially includes all businesses with 100 or more employees – must require their employees be vaccinated against COVID or produce a verified negative COVID test on at least a weekly basis. Further, the dictate requires that covered employers also provide paid time off for their employees to get vaccinated and, if needed, paid sick leave to recover from any side effects the employees may experience that prevent them from working. Beyond these requirements, employers must meet all OSHA reporting and record-keeping requirements and ensure that those who remain unvaccinated are masked within the workplace. The testing requirement for unvaccinated workers will begin 60 days hence, after January 4, 2022, however the masking of unvaccinated workers providing paid leave for others to get the vaccine becomes effective in 30 days on December 5, 2021, so covered employers are well-advised to begin preparing now for the mandate. It is also important to note that the new regulation specifically preempts any inconsistent state or local laws, “including laws that ban or limit an employer’s authority to require vaccination, masks, or testing.” This sets up the course for inevitable lawsuits between a number of states and the federal government over the vaccine requirement. We will provide additional guidance and direction on the mandate as more information becomes available.