Client Alert: NYC Phase 2, Outdoor Seating Application, and Employee Antibody Testing

Dear friends and colleagues,

There’s some new guidance on employee antibody testing and NYC’s Phase 2 (including industry-specific information, applications for outside seating, and more). Check out the updates below:

New York City heading into Phase 2 on Monday

  • All signs are pointing to the City entering the next phase of reopening on Monday. This means employees returning to work, outdoor dining, in-store shopping, and busier offices.
  • Familiarize yourself with the State’s updated guidelines for your industry, as well as general rules and recommendations for all returning employees.
  • For restaurants and bars: there’s new guidance (the City’s Open Restaurants program) allowing certain restaurants and bars to expand outdoor seating on sidewalks, curb lanes, backyards, patios, plazas, and certain streets. More information about this program can be found here.
  • To access the required affirmation to expand outdoor seating, click here.
  • Businesses can find City-approved posters here.

EEOC says “NO” to antibody testing employees

  • The EEOC issued new guidance warning that employers who require antibody testing before permitting employees to re-enter the workplace are in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act (refer to Question A.7).
  • To be clear, employers are still permitted to conduct temperature checks and COVID-19 tests as conditions for returning to the workplace. As we advised in our “back to work” guide (link above), just make sure you screen employees in a consistent and non-discriminatory manner. And keep all health data confidential!

As always, we’ll continue to provide updates and keep you informed. In the meantime, we’re here to answer any questions you have.

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