Should workplaces insist that employees continue to distance and wear masks? How should a workplace handle employees that have not been vaccinated?

First and foremost, employers are responsible for maintaining a healthy and safe workplace. Employers are always advised to take health guidance from public health authorities; depending on current conditions that may mean implementing masks and distancing for some time until local health authorities suggest otherwise. Employers should also keep employees informed of important COVID-19 information, such as the proper procedures to follow if they are experiencing symptoms, and the important numbers to call. 

Because there will be unvaccinated employees for a number of different reasons, and there may be a need to interact closely with customers, clients and suppliers that are unvaccinated, precautions should remain in place.

Employees should be encouraged to keep their vaccination status private and discrete in the workplace. Obviously this is no easy feat considering the prevalence that vaccination rates play in the news cycle, but employers and managers should remind employees that their vaccination status is a private matter, and should not be discussed openly. This may be the safest way to ensure that an employee is not bullied or discriminated against based on what may be a protected human rights ground.