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Publix backpedals on weekly testing for unvaccinated employees

BY JENNIFER CABRERA

After tweets about a Publix internal memo stating that they will test unvaccinated employees weekly caught the attention of a Publix spokesman, @PublixHelps tweeted that Publix has reversed course on the plan.

However, the same spokesman said that masks will continue to be required for employees because of OSHA “requirements.”

However, OSHA’s page on “Protecting Workers: Guidance on Mitigating and Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace” uses words like “encourage,” “suggest,” and “choose” when discussing masks except for a section on higher-risk workplaces, which includes high-volume retail and grocery. That section includes a statement that employers “should” take certain measures that are “best practices.” One of these is: “Require unvaccinated or otherwise at-risk workers, and also fully vaccinated workers in areas of substantial or high community transmission, to wear masks whenever possible, encourage and consider requiring customers and other visitors to do the same.”

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