Dealing with the mandates, rules and restrictions surrounding the COVID pandemic has been a stressful and challenging course for employers, employees and consumers. While some find comfort in taking extra precautions, others feel violated as they feel pressure to change what is comfortable.
Now that the vaccine is widely available for much of the population, there is an increasing push to get those apprehensive about the vaccine to choose to be vaccinated. In an effort to encourage increased vaccination, President Biden made a mandate for certain employers to require vaccination.
Since the announcement of the mandate, there has been substantial push-back from those who are uncertain, with several cases going to the upper courts.
Here’s what you should know about the effect of the pending lawsuits and what it means for employers under the mandate.
Interpreting speculation and the freeze
Currently, the country is divided on how to proceed with the mandate. While the Senate and a handful of states have federal courts supporting blocking the rule, the 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals recently issued an order allowing employers to enforce the mandate.
At this point, the number of cases and divisive rulings indicate that, ultimately, this will be up to the Supreme Court. Until the Supreme Court hears the case and makes a ruling, many employers are trying to guess what will happen next.
Factoring the impact
While the threat of a spreading virus is a significant factor in the vaccine mandate, the divisiveness of the issue means there is more at stake. If the Supreme Court upholds the order, employees will have to decide between the vaccine and their job.
Ultimately, employers are looking at whether they can afford to lose those who refuse the vaccine, and employees are deciding if they can afford to lose their jobs.
As the courts look at the issue, it will be a matter of weighing a substantial labor shortage versus the danger of people remaining unvaccinated.