Health & Safety

Workplace Safety

Carleton College is responsible for furnishing its employees a safe place of employment, free from hazards, causing or likely to cause, injury or serious physical harm. For the safety of its students, faculty, staff, and guests, Carleton will exercise its right to prohibit firearms on campus, including at all public events. Each employee has an obligation to comply with all safety and health standards, rules, regulations or orders issued by the College as well as those of the Federal Occupational Safety and Health Act. Working conditions judged to be unsafe should be immediately reported by the employee to his or her supervisor or department head, and the supervisor then is responsible for reporting the problem to the director of facilities for evaluation and, if needed, corrective action. Detailed provisions of the Act are available in the Facilities Management Office.

See information regarding Disability Access and Accommodations.

Employee Vaccination Policy


The health and safety of our employees and meeting our obligation to provide and maintain a workplace that is free of known hazards is paramount. Accordingly, we are adopting this policy to safeguard the health of our employees; students; and the community at large from infectious diseases, such as COVID-19 and influenza, that may be reduced by vaccinations.

This policy will comply with all applicable laws and is based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Minnesota Department of Health and local health authorities, as applicable.


All employees are required to receive vaccinations and vaccine boosters as determined by Carleton College unless a reasonable accommodation is approved.


Carleton College’s Office of Human Resources maintains and publicizes a list of the vaccines that this policy encompasses and the applicable deadline(s) for complying with this policy.

Before the applicable vaccination deadlines, all employees must either (a) establish that they have received all recommended doses of the designated vaccine(s) and the recommended delay period has passed; or (b) obtain an approved exemption as an accommodation. The process for seeking an accommodation is explained below.

Employees will be required to provide documentation to establish that they have received the required vaccination(s), which could include a copy of a vaccination card or other verification from an authorized health care provider.  Employees should not include any medical or genetic information when presenting proof of vaccination.

Whenever possible, Carleton College will assist employees by providing on-campus access to immunizations or identifying sites where employees may receive the vaccinations. Vaccinations should be run through employees’ health insurance where applicable. Employees may submit for reimbursement the cost of a vaccination not provided by the College or covered by health insurance.

Employees will be paid for reasonable time taken to receive vaccinations. For vaccinations received off-campus, employees are to work with their supervisor to schedule appropriate time to comply with this policy.

Reasonable Accommodations

Employees in need of an exemption from this policy due to a medical reason, or because of a sincerely held religious belief, must submit a completed Accommodation Request Form and supporting documentation to Human Resources at least two weeks prior to the vaccination deadline. We encourage employees to begin the interactive accommodation process as soon as possible after vaccination deadlines have been announced. Although Carleton College encourages employees to suggest specific reasonable accommodations, the College is not required to make the specific accommodation requested and may provide an alternative effective accommodation, to the extent any reasonable accommodation can be made without imposing an undue hardship on the College or posing a direct threat to the employee or others in the workplace.

Carleton College makes determinations about requested accommodations and exemptions on a case-by-case basis considering various factors and based on an individualized assessment in each situation. Carleton College strives to make these determinations expeditiously and in a fair and nondiscriminatory manner and will inform employees once a determination is made. Employees should contact Human Resources with any questions about accommodation or exemption requests.

Employees granted an accommodation or exemption under this policy may be required to use additional personal protective equipment, submit to regular PCR testing as provided by Carleton College, or take other actions as directed to mitigate risk to faculty, staff, and students whenever they are on campus.

GINA Safe Harbor

The Genetic Information Nondiscrimination Act of 2008 (GINA) prohibits employers and other entities covered by GINA Title II from requesting or requiring genetic information of an individual or family member of the individual, except as specifically allowed by this law. To comply with this law, Carleton College requests that employees refrain from providing any genetic information when responding to any request for information under this policy.

“Genetic information,” as defined by GINA, includes:

  • An individual’s family medical history.
  • The results of an individual’s or family member’s genetic tests.
  • The fact that an individual or an individual’s family member sought or received genetic services.
  • Genetic information of a fetus carried by an individual or an individual’s family member or an embryo lawfully held by an individual or family member receiving assistive reproductive services.

Policy Modification

Government and public health guidelines and restrictions and business and industry best practices regarding COVID-19 and COVID-19 vaccines are changing rapidly as new information becomes available, further research is conducted, and additional vaccines are approved and distributed. Carleton College reserves the right to modify this Policy at any time in its sole discretion to adapt to changing circumstances and business needs, consistent with its commitment to maintaining a safe and healthy workplace.

Enforcement and Non-Retaliation

Employees not in compliance with this policy are unable to work and, as such, are voluntarily resigning their positions. In some circumstances, an employee may request a voluntary, unpaid leave until they meet the requirement. While on leave, employees will be subject to Carleton’s standard leave policies and the leave duration will be based on operational feasibility. Although we will attempt to return employees to a similar position, Carleton is unable to guarantee a position will be available.

Carleton College prohibits any form of discipline, reprisal, intimidation, or retaliation for reporting a violation of this Policy or any other health and safety concern. Employees also have the right to report work-related injuries and illnesses, and Carleton College will not discharge or discriminate or otherwise retaliate against employees for reporting work-related injuries or illnesses or good faith health and safety concerns.

Collective Bargaining Agreement

Employees covered under a Collective Bargaining Agreement should consult the terms of their collective bargaining agreement.

Current vaccine requirement(s)

  1. Effective August 1, 2021, all employees will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Employees may choose any COVID-19 vaccination approved by the World Health Organization and will be required to submit proof of vaccination. Employees are considered fully vaccinated 14 days after the final dose of the vaccination series.
  2. Effective October 2021, all employees working between October – April will be required to be vaccinated against seasonal influenza. Employees may receive any FDA-approved, licensed, age-appropriate flu vaccine (IIV, RIV4, or LAIV4) with no preference for any one vaccine over another. This includes both the flu shot and mist.
  3. Effective January 21, 2022, all employees are required to receive a booster dose for the COVID-19 vaccine 6 months after completing the primary vaccination series for Pfizer or Moderna, or 2 months after receiving a Johnson & Johnson vaccination. Employees are required to get and report their booster dose within 14 days of reaching eligibility.
  4. Effective December 1, 2022, all employees are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19; Carleton’s definition of being “fully vaccinated” will align with the CDC’s definition: You are fully vaccinated when you have received all doses in the primary series and all boosters for which you are eligible. Detailed information about eligibility is available on the CDC website. Employees are required to become fully vaccinated within 14 days of reaching eligibility.
  5. Effective June 5, 2023, there are no vaccination requirements for employees.

Additional Resources

Carleton College Infectious Disease Control Policy

The College will take proactive steps to protect the workplace in the event of an infectious disease outbreak. It is our goal during any such time period to strive to operate effectively and ensure that all essential services are continuously provided and that faculty, staff and students are safe.

The Infectious Disease Team will monitor events and share counsel concerning an infectious disease outbreak.

College leadership may add new relevant policies, practices or guidelines or modify existing ones as needed in response to an outbreak. Specific instructions and requirements may be issued on topics such as:

  • Hygiene
  • Staying Home When Ill
  • Requests for Medical Information and/or Documentation
    If an employee shows symptoms of being ill or has been exposed to an infectious disease, we may request information from a health care provider to show whether an absence relates to the infection and when it is appropriate to return to work.
  • Confidentiality of Medical Information
    Medical information will be treated as a confidential medical record. We will limit the disclosure of medical information to supervisors, managers, first aid and safety personnel, and government officials as required by law.
  • Limiting Travel
  • Remote Work
  • Social Distancing

Last Revised: July 25, 2022

For: Faculty, Staff

Last Reviewed: July 25, 2022

Maintained by: Human Resources