EEOC GUIDANCE on the Impact of the ADA on COVID-19 Preventative Measures
. Based upon this, the EEOC has provided the following clarity regarding the following questions which is very useful for employers:
- – Employers can also require employees to disclose if they are experiencing symptoms of the pandemic virus, including fever, chills, cough, shortness of breath or sore throat. In doing so, remind employees that this is a safety issue and that failing to do so can result in discipline up to and including termination.
- – This clarifies that if you want to scan employees’ body temperatures that appear to have symptoms or before entering your facility you can. However, you will want to make sure you are being consistent and non-discriminatory in doing. Additionally, you will want to be careful in how you are measuring an employee’s body temperature to avoid potentially exposing employees (e.g. failing to implement proper safety procedures for who is taking the temperature, whether a thermometer that requires contact with skin is being used, etc.).
- – Due to the safety issues, if you have an employee who is showing symptoms of COVID-19, but does not want to go home, for safety reasons you can send the employee home. In doing so, you should document the symptoms and observable facts as to why you are sending the employee home.
- – This is a difficult issue because sending an employee to a doctor or hospital, not only takes away health care resources that may be needed for the pandemic outbreak, but it could potentially expose the employee to COVID-19 as well. Another possible option is working with your workers’ compensation provider to see if they will provide screenings for employees returning back to work. Ultimately, once an employee shows symptoms, the best practice may be to follow guidelines by Public Health Authorities, including the CDC and WHO regarding time an individual should remain out of the workplace or public gatherings after showing symptoms.