We all made adjustments in our lives in 2020, when COVID-19 shut down our offices, schools, churches, and more. It was a difficult time for many people, and we are all now more than ready to have that time in our rearview mirror.
The COVID-19 vaccine shows promise to help that happen, to help us move on to the next new normal; however, the question of whether or not a business can mandate that their employees get vaccinated in order to work has come to light lately, and many people are asking what their rights are surrounding vaccines as an employee.
In December 2020, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) updated its COVID guidance to include vaccinations and how they interact with the Americans with Disabilities Act. According to that guidance, there are circumstances in which an employee who refuses to get vaccinated could be excluded from the workplace.
Also, federal law does not prohibit vaccination programs, as long as employees can attain valid disability or religious exemptions.
Mandatory vaccination programs might be allowable, but they still need to comply with all of the local, state, and federal regulations, as well as public health guidelines.
There are still many unknowns around the pandemic, including how and when everyone who wants it will receive a vaccine. Employers should stay up to date on the latest information and changes regarding COVID-19 and legal rights for employers and employees – and our experienced attorneys at Terrazas Henkel, P.C. can make sure you do.
If you are considering implementing a vaccine program or have been asked to participate in one, give our team of professionals a call today to set up an appointment. We’ll help you work through your options, and help you to arrive at the best decision for you.