On December 13, 2021, New York Governor Kathy Hochul instituted a mandate requiring that masks be worn in indoor public spaces, unless a covered business has implemented a mandatory vaccination requirement. The mandate was set to be reevaluated on January 15, 2022. However, as part of her “Winter Surge Plan 2.0,” and before the mandate’s original expiration date, Governor Hochul extended the mask-or-vaccine requirement for an additional two weeks, until at least February 1, 2022. As part of the announcement, the governor indicated that the state would reassess masking requirements in February 2022.

Employers in New York State may want to ensure that their practices comply with the obligations set forth in the mandate and continue implementing any required policies. Employers in New York City also may want to stay updated on how these requirements affect the New York City private-sector employer vaccine mandate.

Ogletree Deakins will continue to monitor and report on developments with respect to New York COVID-19 mandates and will post updates in the firm’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resource Center and on the New York blog as additional information becomes available. Important information for employers is also available via the firm’s webinar and podcast programs.