Federal Manager's Daily Report

The EEOC has expanded its guidance on workplace laws including the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Rehabilitation Act—which apply to the federal workplace as well as to many private sector companies—in light of issues that have arisen due to the Coronavirus pandemic.

For example, it says that an employer must store separately from the employee’s personnel files any information it obtains about an employee related to the virus, including the results of taking an employee’s temperature or the employee’s suspicion, or self-identification, of having been infected.

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That may be stored in employer may store all medical information related to COVID-19 in existing medical files along with the employer’s notes or other documentation from questioning an employee about symptoms.

Also for example, an employer may not postpone the starting date or withdraw a job offer from someone in a group identified as being at higher risk, such as pregnant women. “However, an employer may choose to allow telework or to discuss with these individuals if they would like to postpone the start date,” it says.

The guidance, at eeoc.gov/coronavirus, also includes new information on reasonable accommodation, harassment and other topics.

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2020 Federal Employees Handbook