These employees across the country must be fully vaccinated or tested weekly by Jan. 4
The White House vaccine rule would require private companies and workers to comply with the rules by Jan. 4
Companies with more than 100 employees must ensure that their workers are fully vaccinated or tested weekly by Jan. 4 or face federal violations, the Biden administration announced Thursday.
What is Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate?
The new federal rule, issued after weeks of discussion, will require workers and staff at large companies to be vaccinated, The Washington Post reports.
- The policy would require weekly testing or mandatory face masks for workers who do not get vaccinated.
- Employers must provide paid time for workers to get vaccinated or recover from COVID-19 vaccine side effects, according to The Washington Post.
- Companies must also pay for tests.
- Companies could face fines starting at $14,000 per violation, per Axios.
Why is Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate controversial?
Some companies have started to comply with the new rules already. Right now, a full vaccination requires either two vaccine shots of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Booster shots are not, for now, included in the mandate.
The vaccine mandate has drawn heavy criticism in recent weeks. It’s an attempt by the White House to get more people vaccinated. But it is coming at a cost, as critics see it as a potential power grab.
- “The policy is already being contested by Republicans and the small but vocal anti-vaccine factions that have proved so disruptive politically over the past year,” according to The Washington Post.
Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo told CBS’ “Face the Nation” that waiting until after the holiday season to implement the policy would be a mistake.
- “It would be a mistake. It would be a mistake,” he said. “You know, this year we’re on path to have the strongest GDP growth in decades. We had a blip in the third quarter. Why? Delta- Delta variant, the quicker everyone gets vaccinated, the better our economy will be back on track, the quicker everybody gets back to work.”