Bill outlining COVID-19 vaccine exemptions for employees heads to governor’s desk
A bill detailing reasons why an employee could be exempted from getting a COVID-19 vaccine is on its way to Governor Spencer Cox’s desk for either his signature or veto.Senate Bill 2004 passed the House 55 to 17 Wednesday evening, and it passed the Senate 22 to 6 earlier in the day. The bill specifies that an employee can receive an exemption to a COVID-19 workplace vaccine for health, religious or personal reasons. It also prevents employees from taking action against employees who seek an exemption. In addition, the measure requires employers to pay for workplace testing and largely prohibits them from keeping records of an employee’s vaccination status.
Those who voted for H.B. 2004 say the bill is going to put a stop to citizens being forced to make tough decisions on whether or not to quit their jobs, get fired, or get a vaccination they don’t want to get. Others against the bill say it imposed another mandate on businesses and that current uncertainty over President Biden’s vaccine or testing mandate, which was put on hold by a federal appeals court recently, meant lawmakers should hold off until the mandate’s future is more clear.