Supreme Court Blocks Mandatory Vaccine For Large Businesses
Over the last year there has been so much speculation about vaccine requirements amongst large corporations. As of January 13, 2022 The U.S. Supreme Court blocked the federal mandate coming from the Biden administration to invorce a vaccine mandate or testing protocols for companies.
Supreme Court Blocks Mandatory Vaccines for Large Businesses
With a 6-3 decision The Supreme Court ruled against the president’s vaccine mandate or weekly testing requirements for employment. However, it allowed the mandate to apply to hospital workers who accept Medicare and Medicaid payments. The American trucking sector was told all along that workplace vaccination and testing rules did not apply to solo drivers. OSHA however made team drivers aware that the mandate does apply to them but after the court ruling all of that is null and void.
There are many plaintiffs in the Supreme court case who are celebrating the ruling along with The American Trucking Associations. The CEO and President Chris Spear gave a statement regarding the decision. “Today, ATA has won a tremendous victory on behalf of the trucking industry and workers and employers everywhere. Today’s ruling by the Supreme Court validates our claim that OSHA far overstepped its authority in issuing an emergency temporary standard that would interfere with individuals’ private health care decisions. Trucking has been on the front lines throughout the pandemic — delivering PPE, medical supplies, food, clothing, fuel, and even the vaccines themselves. Thanks to this ruling, our industry will continue to deliver critical goods, as our nation recovers from the pandemic and we move our economy forward.”
Last November the president created the Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) that required COVID-19 vaccinations or testing protocols for companies with over 100 employees. The Supreme court said, “Applicants are likely to succeed on the merits of their claim that [the secretary of labor] lacked authority to impose the mandate.” The court deemed OSHAs involvement in these regulations outside it’s “sphere of expertise.” The court believes that OSHA lacks clear congressional authorizations to regulate vaccinations over employees just because most Americans work. Allowing OSHA authority over general public health would give them authority then they should have.
There was talk of the Biden administration taking this back to the Court of Appeals for the 6th Circuit but they spoke out on Wednesday and withdrew their pursuit after the ruling. Biden requested that despite the decision companies should voluntarily implement the mandates. OSHA operated out of their emergency powers and will continue to keep workers protected as it has authority to do so. A Labor Department spokesperson stated that, “OSHA is evaluating the record and the evolving course of the pandemic. OSHA has made no determinations at this time about when or if it will finalize a vaccination and testing rule.”
As the Omicron variant continues to create staffing shortages amongst hospitals coupled with high volumes of patients the AFL-CIO and National Nurses United asked for a federal appeals court. They have hopes to allow OSHA to reinstate authority and implement permanent mandates to protect health-care workers.
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