CPA vaccine mandate survey shows panel industry concerns18 October 2021
US wood panel manufacturers have expressed concern about potential production disruption coming from President Joe Biden’s proclamation stipulating mandatory Covid-19 vaccinations for all US companies with more than for 100 employees.
Preident Biden announced recently that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) would soon begin the development of an emergency temporary standard mandating vaccinations, with those not willing to be vaccinated needing to produce a negative COVID-19 test on a weekly basis.
In September, the Composite Panel Association circulated a survey to members to assess the potential impact of such a mandate on member operations.
More than 75% of responding CPA member companies do not presently have a vaccine mandate for employees, though several indicated that they have strongly encouraged employees to get vaccinated.
“More than 75% of responders reported that a mandate could result in employees deciding to discontinue employment, further exacerbating ongoing labour shortages,” the CPA said. “This would also impact mill production, with several responders noting that the mandate may lead to temporary production disruptions, depending on the ultimate impact on mill employment.”
The alternative of weekly COVID testing may not pose a significant problem, as almost 60% of responders indicated no local shortage of testing resources.
OSHA continues work on the emergency standard and a number of key details remain unclear, including when the standard may be issued, how much time employers will have to implement the mandate, and whom will be responsible for weekly employee testing, if an employee elects this option in lieu of a vaccine.
The CPA says it will continue to monitor and report on this matter as the mandate’s details are released from the administration.