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All Employees: NY HERO Act: Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plan is in Effect

The following message is being sent on the behalf of Environmental, Health, and Safety (EHS) and Human Resources.

On September 3, 2021, you received an email from Human Resources outlining Vassar’s Airborne Infectious Disease Exposure Prevention Plan in response to the NY HERO Act. The purpose of the Prevention Plan is to protect employees against exposure and disease during an airborne infectious disease outbreak. On that date, New York State did not require employers to implement their Prevention Plans.

On September 6, 2021, Governor Kathy Hochul announced the designation of COVID-19 as an airborne infectious disease under the NY HERO Act and required all employers to implement their established Prevention Plan. This plan is now in effect and can be found on the Human Resources website:

The Prevention Plan requires minimum controls during a designated outbreak which include:

  • Vassar will provide general awareness and training for employees. Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) and Health Services will be scheduling awareness training to refresh employees on COVID-19 protocols and safety measures (e.g. wearing face masks, proper hand hygiene).
  • Everyone screens for symptoms daily.
  • Employees must stay home when symptoms develop and contact Health Services for guidance.
  • Employees must wear face coverings.
  • Employees maintain physical distancing as much as feasible and avoid unnecessary gatherings.
  • Custodial Services will continue to follow cleaning and disinfecting procedures consistent with NYSDOH and/or CDC guidance.
  • Everyone should wash their hands properly and often to prevent the spread of infection.
  • Everyone should exercise coughing/sneezing etiquette to avoid spreading droplets.
  • Employees may contact Human Resources for special accommodations for individuals with added risk factors.

Many of these controls are already in place and are familiar to you.

For information on COVID-19 vaccinations, symptoms, and quarantine leaves, visit

For the COVID-19 dashboard, visit

Questions regarding the Prevention Plan can be directed to Jim Kelly, Director of Environmental, Health and Safety, or Human Resources.