WACO, TX — The latest federal guidance still maintains employers can require employees are vaccinated for COVID-19. A legal challenge over Houston Methodist's COVID policy thrown out last month perhaps provided a head nod to companies implementing employee vaccine mandates today.
Recently, Baylor Scott & White adopted a similar vaccine mandate policy for employees. All moves, Waco resident Bobby Bradshaw says, show in our drive against the coronavirus, today we're in neutral.
"The fact is that in a lot of communities, people just don't trust what the CDC is saying. As a society, we're just trying to figure out which way to go."
Fully vaccinated, but unsure if mandates are the route to put the gear back in drive, saying he always knew vaccine hesitancy persisted.
The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission lists some avenues for employees may be able to avoid vaccine requirements. Whether through a medical condition such as illness or because of a strongly held religious belief.
"For example, you might be able to get a different mask as a reasonable accommodation. Or, if you did not take a COVID-19 vaccine because of your disability or religious belief, practice, or observance, you might be able to get an exception to your employer’s vaccination requirement, and instead ask to use masks, social distancing, schedule changes, or reassignment to stay safe at work."
While a federal mandate, requiring a COVID-19 vaccination, hasn't been issued. Bradshaw said he's worried the reaction some will have, if one is, will make our drive against the coronavirus even longer.
"Texas is one of those states where we push back," Bradshaw said. "If you tell us what to do we're going to say we're not going to do it. People don't take it seriously until a loved one or somebody in their family gets sick. Then the first thing that you've seen on television that everybody says, I wish I would have got vaccinated"
Its people not receiving a vaccination is still the problem, said leaders at the federal level spanning from the Trump to Biden admin should look in the mirror,
"That's troubling to a lot of people because like me, I rushed to get the vaccination" he explained. "Now the CDC said that I'd be OK if I got it, but now you're telling me that I can still get it."
At the end of the day Bradshaw says one, at the state and federal level needs to be reiterated again, and again.
"But I feel like this. If you want to be out here, we want to get back to the way it is a vaccine," Bradshaw said. "The vaccination is the way to do it."