Employers can reduce the risk of COVID-19 spreading in their workplace by following these tips:
- Reduce exposure through staggered and flexible schedules, and virtual meetings and events instead of in-person activities
- Encourage employees to get tested for COVID-19
- Remind employees to stay home if they are sick or test positive
- Require masks at all times
- Help employees stay distanced from each other and the public while working
- Promote COVID-19 vaccination
New York State’s New York Forward industry-specific guidelines—including social gathering limits, capacity restrictions, social distancing, cleaning and disinfection, health screening, and contact information for tracing—are now lifted for all businesses except indoor event venues with a capacity of 5,000 to 9,999.
Other businesses are free to choose to follow the State's archived guidance or implement other health precautions for their employees and patrons. They are also allowed to require masks and six feet of social distancing for employees and customers, regardless of vaccination status.
Learn more about COVID-19 restrictions being lifted in New York State.
Learn about rules for large indoor event venues.
The New York State mask-or-vaccine requirement for all indoor businesses settings was officially lifted on Thursday, February 10, 2022.
However the State still requires face coverings for everyone when in:
- Public transit
- Health care settings
- Childcare centers
- Congregate settings, such as nursing homes and homeless shelters
- Correctional facilities
The Key to NYC vaccine mandate ended on March 7, 2022. The program required employees and customers of indoor dining, fitness, and entertainment venues to prove they were vaccinated.
Businesses previously covered by Key to NYC rules can still require proof of vaccination or masking indoors if they choose.
The Department of Health and Mental Hygiene workplace vaccine mandate (separate from Key to NYC) for all private businesses in New York City remains in effect. Employees covered by this mandate are required to show their employers proof that they received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by December 27, 2021. Proof of a second dose (for Pfizer or Moderna vaccines) is required 45 days later.
Reasonable accommodation requests must have been submitted to employers by December 27. Employees may continue working while accommodations are being processed.
- Post an official DOHMH sign in an obvious spot
- Keep a record of each worker’s proof and any reasonable accommodations
- Ensure employees get their second dose
Learn more about the mandate.
Business owners can access resources and assistance from Small Business Services (SBS) on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Businesses page.
At this time, there is no general vaccine mandate for students ages 5 or older attending public school. However, vaccination is required for students ages 5 and up participating in high-risk sports and extracurricular activities.
All DOE employees and City contracted child care/after-school staff were also required to submit proof of at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine by October 1, 2021. Learn more on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and Schools page.
All employees at private schools, including yeshivas and Catholic schools, are required to show proof they received the first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by December 20, 2021. At this time there is no vaccine mandate for students attending private schools.
Learn more on the Private School Vaccine Mandate page.
To learn about mandates for City government workers, visit the Coronavirus (COVID-19) and City Workers page.
In New York State, all healthcare workers. including staff at hospitals and long-term care facilities that are public or private, were required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as of September 27, 2021.
These facilities include:
- Adult care
- Nursing homes
- Other congregate care settings
The State Department of Health requires these facilities to develop and implement a policy mandating employee vaccination, with limited exceptions for those with religious or medical reasons.
You should contact your employer’s human resources department for more information.
Office of Mental Health and the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities
Staff were required to show proof of at least the first shot of a COVID-19 vaccine series as of November 1, 2021. There is no test-out option.
State Court System
All NY State court system workers were required to receive the COVID-19 vaccine or be tested weekly for COVID-19 as of September 1, 2021.
Learn more about the vaccine mandate.