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D&D and the rising pandemic

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
While I approve of the move to fire folks that refuse to get vaccinated, there's no way that any politician is going to try to make this a law. It is a pretty hefty violation of rights, regardless of how justified, and sets a really, really scary precedence.

I mean, if I can fire you for not getting a medical treatment, where does that end?

You cannot fire me for not getting a medical treatment. You can (and should) fire me if I am willfully a health threat to my coworkers and customers.
 

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Garthanos

Arcadian Knight
If the worker got immunity the natural way (caught the virus and kicked it) then that worker need not be vaccinated. Give the employee a Corona-antibody test to make sure. If they are full of antibodies, get off their back.
From all I have read we arent even sure whether the "natural way" really works for generating immunity (though it most likely will)
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
If the worker got immunity the natural way (caught the virus and kicked it) then that worker need not be vaccinated.

It isn't that simple, especially as variants begin to crop up. Current CDC advice is that those who have had the disease should still be vaccinated.

Give the employee a Corona-antibody test to make sure. If they are full of antibodies, get off their back.

The antibody tests we have do not measure, gauge, or otherwise indicate immunity.
 

Ryujin

Hero
I thought of starting a new thread for this question, but it didn't seem right when this one already existed. How is everyone maintaining their sanity, more than a year into this mess? What hobbies have you been practicing? Have you been making use of online gaming tools? Other things?
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
I thought of starting a new thread for this question, but it didn't seem right when this one already existed. How is everyone maintaining their sanity, more than a year into this mess? What hobbies have you been practicing? Have you been making use of online gaming tools? Other things?

Before covid, I was running my usual game (a campaign whose end coincidentally aligned with lockdowns anyway), and playing in on D&D game.

Now, I'm playing in 3 D&D games and one Fate Accelerated game online, and I'm not running anything. Roll20, Owlbear Rodeo, Discord and Zoom (in various combinations) have been the toolsets of choice.

My household income has been pretty secure in all this, so I have spread some money around to smaller game companies, picking up sets of rules and absorbing them for possible post-covid use.
 

Ryujin

Hero
Before covid, I was running my usual game (a campaign whose end coincidentally aligned with lockdowns anyway), and playing in on D&D game.

Now, I'm playing in 3 D&D games and one Fate Accelerated game online, and I'm not running anything. Roll20, Owlbear Rodeo, Discord and Zoom (in various combinations) have been the toolsets of choice.

My household income has been pretty secure in all this, so I have spread some money around to smaller game companies, picking up sets of rules and absorbing them for possible post-covid use.
That's the sort of thing that I've been wondering about: Does the current world situation mean that it's easier to game, online, than it was to try and get the group together physically? Despite having many of the resources that you mention (Discord, Roll20, Fantasy Grounds/FGUnity), I've not been playing. I have, however, picked up a few rule sets to play around with, most notably the second edition of Demon Hunters and the new releases of TORG, both of which are pretty cinematic in style, though in markedly different ways.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
That's the sort of thing that I've been wondering about: Does the current world situation mean that it's easier to game, online, than it was to try and get the group together physically?

Not in my experience. In the past, the one game I ran and the one I played in ran pretty reliably. Now, I am plying in four games, but none of them are as reliable as my in-person games were. I think I wind up in, on average, about the same number of sessions per week actually running.
 

MarkB

Legend
I thought of starting a new thread for this question, but it didn't seem right when this one already existed. How is everyone maintaining their sanity, more than a year into this mess? What hobbies have you been practicing? Have you been making use of online gaming tools? Other things?
I've always been a bit of a loner, stay at home for most of my holiday time, and don't have much in the way of friends outside our local gaming groups. I've had a couple of downer days, but for the most part it's been
images
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
You cannot fire me for not getting a medical treatment. You can (and should) fire me if I am willfully a health threat to my coworkers and customers.
I'm pretty sure employers don't have to employ anyone who hasn't gotten the vaccine. Medical procedure is not a protected status. The issue is that with HIPAA, they can't require employees to tell them if they've gotten the vaccine or not, so they would have no way of knowing.

And then there are places like this cropping up now. :(

 

Ryujin

Hero
I've always been a bit of a loner, stay at home for most of my holiday time, and don't have much in the way of friends outside our local gaming groups. I've had a couple of downer days, but for the most part it's been
images
I get the loner thing. I'm pretty introverted. It's easier to talk to people who are a continent away, than who are in easy driving distance. Might be why I have so many friends on the west coast of the US, when I live in Toronto :ROFLMAO:
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
The issue is that with HIPAA, they can't require employees to tell them if they've gotten the vaccine or not, so they would have no way of knowing.

I believe this is inaccurate. HIPAA is generally about how the various people who have your health information can manage it. So, HIPAA says that your doctor or insurance company cannot tell your employer your status without your express permission. It does not regulate whether your employer can require you, yourself, to show your vax card.
 
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Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
I'm pretty sure employers don't have to employ anyone who hasn't gotten the vaccine. Medical procedure is not a protected status. The issue is that with HIPAA, they can't require employees to tell them if they've gotten the vaccine or not, so they would have no way of knowing.
Employers can indeed ask about symptoms, C19 vaccination status, and related questions. But they also have to safeguard that information- there are strict limits to how and with whom they can share such info.

(Caveat: if the employee overshares information with the employer, the employer isn’t required to toss/disregard such information. The employer must still treat it with the same safeguards as the employee’s other information, though.)




COVID-19: What Employers Need to Know About HIPAA


A.8. May employers ask all employees physically entering the workplace if they have been diagnosed with or tested for COVID-19? (9/8/20; adapted from 3/27/20 Webinar Question 1)
Yes. Employers may ask all employees who will be physically entering the workplace if they have COVID-19 or symptoms associated with COVID-19, and ask if they have been tested for COVID-19. Symptoms associated with COVID-19 include, for example, fever, chills, cough, and shortness of breath. The CDC has identified a current list of symptoms.
An employer may exclude those with COVID-19, or symptoms associated with COVID-19, from the workplace because, as EEOC has stated, their presence would pose a direct threat to the health or safety of others. However, for those employees who are teleworking and are not physically interacting with coworkers or others (for example, customers), the employer would generally not be permitted to ask these questions.
A.9. May a manager ask only one employee—as opposed to asking all employees—questions designed to determine if she has COVID-19, or require that this employee alone have her temperature taken or undergo other screening or testing? (9/8/20; adapted from 3/27/20 Webinar Question 3)
If an employer wishes to ask only a particular employee to answer such questions, or to have her temperature taken or undergo other screening or testing, the ADA requires the employer to have a reasonable belief based on objective evidence that this person might have the disease. So, it is important for the employer to consider why it wishes to take these actions regarding this particular employee, such as a display of COVID-19 symptoms. In addition, the ADA does not interfere with employers following recommendations by the CDC or other public health authorities regarding whether, when, and for whom testing or other screening is appropriate.

(Edit)

A.11. What may an employer do under the ADA if an employee refuses to permit the employer to take his temperature or refuses to answer questions about whether he has COVID-19, has symptoms associated with COVID-19, or has been tested for COVID-19? (9/8/20; adapted from 3/27/20 Webinar Question 2)
Under the circumstances existing currently, the ADA allows an employer to bar an employee from physical presence in the workplace if he refuses to have his temperature taken or refuses to answer questions about whether he has COVID-19, has symptoms associated with COVID-19, or has been tested for COVID-19. To gain the cooperation of employees, however, employers may wish to ask the reasons for the employee’s refusal. The employer may be able to provide information or reassurance that they are taking these steps to ensure the safety of everyone in the workplace, and that these steps are consistent with health screening recommendations from CDC. Sometimes, employees are reluctant to provide medical information because they fear an employer may widely spread such personal medical information throughout the workplace. The ADA prohibits such broad disclosures. Alternatively, if an employee requests reasonable accommodation with respect to screening, the usual accommodation process should be followed; this is discussed in Question G.7.

(Edit)

K.3. Is asking or requiring an employee to show proof of receipt of a COVID-19 vaccination a disability-related inquiry? (12/16/20)
No. There are many reasons that may explain why an employee has not been vaccinated, which may or may not be disability-related. Simply requesting proof of receipt of a COVID-19 vaccination is not likely to elicit information about a disability and, therefore, is not a disability-related inquiry. However, subsequent employer questions, such as asking why an individual did not receive a vaccination, may elicit information about a disability and would be subject to the pertinent ADA standard that they be “job-related and consistent with business necessity.” If an employer requires employees to provide proof that they have received a COVID-19 vaccination from a pharmacy or their own health care provider, the employer may want to warn the employee not to provide any medical information as part of the proof in order to avoid implicating the ADA.
 
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Janx

Hero
related to HIPAA, I am surprised OSHA hasn't weighed in on Covid. It sure seems like they'd be required to mandate a safe working environment which includes masks for everybody and six foot gaps, etc.
 

Maxperson

Morkus from Orkus
I believe this is inaccurate. HIPAA is generally about how the various people who have your health information can manage it. So, HIPAA says that your doctor or insurance company cannot tell your employer your status without your express permission. It does not regulate whether your employer can require you, yourself, to show your vax card.


For some employers, there can be a hitch in that they may not have the require mechanisms in place to protect that information once they've given it to you. But that's a separate issue.
Yeah. I've been looking at it and you can ask for it, but it's a two-edged sword. You can't ask about disabilities, and the answer you get can give you information you aren't allowed to ask for. This is especially true if you ask follow-up questions like why haven't they gotten the vaccine.

What's also interesting is that they are saying that there's a possibility that if your work requires vaccination and you get it, then the vaccination is work related and any side effects might fall under Workers Compensation if they are bad enough.
 

MarkB

Legend
Yeah. I've been looking at it and you can ask for it, but it's a two-edged sword. You can't ask about disabilities, and the answer you get can give you information you aren't allowed to ask for. This is especially true if you ask follow-up questions like why haven't they gotten the vaccine.
In Europe and the UK this sort of thing is covered by the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and it can be a real tight-rope for companies to walk in order to ensure that the information is accessible by those who need it, but unavailable elsewhere in the company. Especially with all the online tools these days that are designed to make it easier for colleagues and departments to communicate and share data.
 

Umbran

Mod Squad
Staff member
What's also interesting is that they are saying that there's a possibility that if your work requires vaccination and you get it, then the vaccination is work related and any side effects might fall under Workers Compensation if they are bad enough.

Documenting such for worker's comp would probably be difficult, as the basic side-effects are transient.
 


billd91

Hobbit on Quest
related to HIPAA, I am surprised OSHA hasn't weighed in on Covid. It sure seems like they'd be required to mandate a safe working environment which includes masks for everybody and six foot gaps, etc.
I'm not surprised. OSHA takes its marching orders from the White House as part of the Department of Labor. In the Biden administration, we might see something come out of OSHA, but it will be months before it can be implemented.
Certain types of presidents, not saying who, aren't exactly the types to push regulations on businesses, even if in the interests of worker health...
 

Dannyalcatraz

Schmoderator
Staff member
related to HIPAA, I am surprised OSHA hasn't weighed in on Covid. It sure seems like they'd be required to mandate a safe working environment which includes masks for everybody and six foot gaps, etc.
They have, in tems of how C19 relates to workplace safety in general. Nothing specific to just COVID, though.

 

Zardnaar

Legend
In America isn't it easier to fire people eg if your boss doesn't like the colour of your shoelaces?

Here they can ask to see your ACC history which documents your injuries basically since your were born. I applied for a job and it had a fractured finger from 1992 high school on it.

You don't have to provide it but they don't have to hire you either. It's basically so you can't hide injuries relevant to job. I've had cases were people have gone I can't do xyz which is fine up to a point but when 2/4 start doing it and you have to do 3 times the work I just said if you can't do it leave.

Similar issue on other jobsite hired an older guy who couldn't physically do much and another new hire was off two weeks in due to her wrists. At that point you stop covering for people.
 

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