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New Mexico and O’Reilly reach settlement over alleged violations related to COVID

O’Reilly Auto Parts will host 11 vaccination events for both employees and the public throughout New Mexico and pay $34,750 to the state

Santa Fe, N.M.—The New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) reached a settlement with O’Reilly Auto Parts over alleged violations of workplace safety laws at a Lovington store related to COVID-19.

NMED issued two citations to O’Reilly in January 2021 for allegedly failing to protect employees from exposure to COVID-19 at its Lovington store. In July 2020, three employees at the location tested positive for the virus, one of whom died from the virus.

Due to measures taken by O’Reilly at that location, no additional employees at the Lovington store have tested positive since July 22, 2020.

As part of the settlement, O’Reilly will host 11 vaccination events for both employees and the public throughout New Mexico in conjunction with NMED and the New Mexico Department of Health. O’Reilly is the first retailer of its kind in New Mexico to host a series of public vaccination events at its stores.

“There is nothing more important than getting New Mexicans vaccinated and our settlement with O’Reilly Auto Parts prioritizes that outcome,” said NMED Cabinet Secretary James Kenney. “All employers must work with their employees to help them get vaccinated. Our employees are our friends and families — now is the time to protect them from illness or death by encouraging vaccination.”

As a term of settlement, O’Reilly also must pay $34,750 to the state, which goes to the state’s general fund. This is the second settlement the state has reached with O’Reilly over alleged COVID-19 workplace safety violations during the pandemic.

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