Breaking News

Even in liberal California, strict vaccine mandates face resistance

Vaccines have been proven to stop the spread of the virus – and groups like the ACLU support for mandates – The actual deployment is a concern for employers who need a less stringent alternative to avoid stoppages.

“The major employers we talk to across all sectors of the economy are trying to do the right thing and actively advocate for vaccinations,” said California Business Roundtable President Rob Lapsley. “But if we don’t have flexibility, people will not agree with the program, and we cannot lose workers, especially now, in this economy,”

School officials are the latest to call for a solution to California’s Covid-19 vaccine requirements. Last month’s news announced First Covid Vaccination Mandate for Students Attending Classes… He ordered the same for the teachers earlier this case

Despite the fact that it is still a few months before the student mandate is fulfilled, before full FDA approval for vaccinations for children under 16 is received, an increasing number of school principals are pleading with Newsom and state legislators to ensure that students can opt out through “personal exemption.” those. this does not exist for other childhood vaccines in the state. Currently, exceptions are allowed under the Newsom Rule, but the State Legislature may change this soon

“If parents of students are forced to make choices next summer, we believe a much larger group of students will remain outside our school system,” Merced County Schools Superintendent Steve Titgen said in an email received Wednesday from POLITICO to teachers. “Regardless of what I think about the importance of vaccination and its ability to keep people safe, we need to keep our students in school.”

Tietjen and other California school officials are concerned that large numbers of students, many of whom are in the low-income category, will remain unvaccinated and thus transferred to distance learning programs that are understaffed and inadequate in grades. The state is short of teachers, exacerbated by the pandemic, and districts are finding themselves poorly equipped to host traditional school activities along with separate distance learning.

School leaders and community activists are also concerned about the displacement of black and Hispanic students from classrooms as vaccination rates remain lower in communities of color.

Newsom has received praise for issuing the first vaccine or test requirements for government officials this summer as red state leaders fought against Covid mitigation. “As the largest employer in the state, we are setting an example and demanding that all government and healthcare workers show proof of vaccination or get tested regularly, and we urge local governments and businesses to do the same,” Newsom said at the time. “Vaccines are the way to end this pandemic.”

But since then, government agencies have been unable to screen about half of the unvaccinated employees and have allowed them to continue, according to last month’s report by the Los Angeles Times

“This was run by the governor’s office, and it’s obvious that even they were in trouble,” Lapsley said. “It all comes down to flexibility.”

Meanwhile, government officials are adamant that they cannot run prisons if staff need to be vaccinated, as correctional staff are more opposed to the vaccine than the general public. despite multiple outbreaks in the immediate vicinity… The officers’ union found an ally in Newsom who fought prison lawyers in court trying to coerce immunizations rather than vaccine or testing options, warning that this would lead to significant shortages in the penitentiary system due to low vaccination rates. …

Newsom’s stance is so uncharacteristic of Newsom, who was one of the most aggressive in the country on vaccinations, that Republicans accused him of sided with corrections officers as they gave him $ 1.75 million to beat the September recall.

“It’s inexplicable to me that a governor who has done much to protect the lives of all Californians is fighting so hard the most effective way to prevent further death and disease in the penitentiary system,” said Donald Specter, executive director of the Bureau of Prison Law, which represents plaintiffs in the case. against the state, POLITICO reported last month.

Concerns over the impact of vaccination requirements on staffing and capacity are shared by other industries.

The US Postal Service has already announced the mandates can lead to “high absenteeism” and affect delivery

The Western Steel Council, which represents metalworkers, has called on the California Occupational Safety and Health Administration to allow more flexible rules. Greg McClelland, Executive Director, Western Steel Council said in a letter last week to government officialsthat the mandate would subject employers to a “hard” rule-making process that sometimes defies common sense.

“Many of us are way ahead of the security forces in digesting and following expert advice on how to protect ourselves from the spread of COVID. And as the guidelines continued to evolve, we continued to change our procedures to keep pace with the evolving advice, ”the letter says.

Since then, California OSHA officials have suspended their plan to move forward with a vaccination or testing mandate for private employers. The Cal / OSHA Standards Board abruptly removed the item from its agenda on Thursday, and board members declined to discuss the matter after the US Labor Department advised states to “take no further steps to comply” with the federal requirement as the Biden administration remains tied. in a court.

Leave a Reply