Asks the COVID Resource Center: Can Private Employers Force Employees to Be Vaccinated?

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July 26
22:58 2021 Asks the COVID Resource Center: Can Private Employers Force Employees to Be Vaccinated?

Since the COVID-19 vaccination first arrived on the scene in 2020, there have been a lot of questions from employers and employees alike. While millions of people have now been vaccinated, there are many who are still leery. Those who are concerned and would like to get more info should continue reading. 

Private Employers Can Mandate Vaccinations

There are many employers who mandate certain vaccines, such as the flu. Because the COVID-19 vaccines are not yet FDA-approved, many employees wonder what the law says about vaccination mandates. Can an employer enforce a vaccine mandate?

As of right now, there are three COVID-19 vaccinations available to the public, according to Currently, these vaccines are only available for adults and children over the age of twelve. Vaccine makers say trials are underway for children ages six months to eleven. 

Those who are hesitant to get the shot or cannot receive the injection because of certain health conditions may wonder if their employer could require vaccinations. According to the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, private employers can require employees to be vaccinated before they return to work. Employers can also offer incentives to encourage employees to get vaccinated. Due to the Americans with Disabilities Act, employers must provide reasonable accommodations for those who cannot get the vaccine because of health issues or other reasons. 

What Should Employees Know?

According to some news outlets, guidelines released by the federal government clear up some of the questions employers and their employees have, but certainly not all. With variants of the virus arriving and some potential side-effects of vaccinations, there could be cause for litigation in the near future. Will employees be able to sue?

Many people are watching the CDC and WHO for information on Coronavirus vaccine and case numbers in the United States: July 9, 2021. The current vaccines available have only received emergency use authorizations from the Food and Drug Administration. As of yet, there is no FDA-approved vaccine, which is an argument to consider when it comes to the mandate of COVID-19 vaccinations. 

Lawyers Are Open to Hearing Potential Cases

While the legal landscape of COVID-19 continues to evolve, there are still a lot of unanswered questions. Employees who do not want to be forced to get the shot to retain employment may reach out to lawyers like Sidley Austin. Employers may also have concerns about their legal obligations and the law as it pertains to a vaccine mandate. Those who have questions and concerns about their rights as an employee should consider meeting with a lawyer to discuss their legal options. A lawyer can advise individuals on the steps they can take to protect their rights and medical records in regards to COVID-19 vaccinations. 

It will be interesting to see what happens when and if these vaccinations become FDA-approved. How will the legal landscape change? Will employers become more forceful in their mandates? Will hesitant employees finally give in and get their injections? As of now, it is a wait-and-see event, but one thing is for certain. Both employers and employees have rights. If they are concerned about their rights being infringed upon, they would be wise to seek legal counsel.

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