Starbucks Prepares Employees to Fulfill Biden’s Vaccine or Testing Order

A Starbucks employee wears a face mask while working in Dallas, Texas.

Ronald Martinez | Getty Images

Starbucks prepares its employees to meet the Biden administration’s requirements for vaccines or Covid tests for private businesses.

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration is requiring private companies with at least 100 employees to conduct weekly Covid testing and masking for unvaccinated workers as part of a broader plan to encourage vaccinations and slow the spread of the virus. The mandate has faced lawsuits from states and Republican-led business groups, and the Supreme Court is expected to hear oral arguments on the matter on Friday.

Meanwhile, Starbucks is asking its U.S. employees to disclose their vaccination status by January 10th. If they are not fully vaccinated by February 9, when the federal mandate is due to begin, workers will have to submit a negative Covid test. -19 Testing no more than seven days before the next shift and once a week in the future.

Unvaccinated workers will be required to provide their own tests, and home tests will not be accepted.

If the effective date changes as a result of the ongoing legal battle over the mandate, Starbucks said it will update the schedule for workers.

The coffee chain also said it may update its policies later if the pandemic worsens. Staff problems in restaurants and retail chains have escalated in recent weeks as the omicron variant has proliferated, pushing companies to encourage vaccinations, routine checks and disguises for employees.

“If vaccination rates rise and population spread slows, we will adapt accordingly. But if things get worse, we may have to consider additional measures, ”wrote John Culver, COO and president of the Starbucks North America group, in a December 27 post. letter from the US barista.

The coffee chain has also updated its policy on how long baristas must isolate after contracting Covid-19, following new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Workers who show symptoms but test negative may return to work before the five-day isolation period, provided their symptoms have improved.

Baristas can receive self-isolation payments for up to five days of skipping shifts twice during the company’s second financial quarter.

Starbucks shares fell more than 1% in daytime trading despite being named their top pick for 2022 by BTIG.

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