LUBBOCK, Texas — On November 4, the White House published a release outlining the COVID-19 vaccine mandate that required all businesses with 100 employees or more to be vaccinated by January 4, 2022.
One section of a 6-part plan was to immunize two-thirds of the workforce and take further initiative in the fight against the virus. The action sparked a backlash from many government officials and led to a letter composed by 24 State Attorney General’s warning the administration to resend the order.
Texas State Senator Charles Perry said the approach is too broad and violates individual rights.
“It’s not right. it’s a way overreach. I think the courts have to step in, and they need to step in quickly. And I think they will,” Perry said.
Between private businesses and institutions with federal contracts, the mandate affects much of the workforce and would drastically increase the rate of those vaccinated by the beginning of the year.
According to the press release, there are few exceptions, including those who fall under medical or religious exemptions. However, those who don’t receive the vaccine will have to comply with weekly testing and continue to wear masks.
Lubbock attorney Bob Nebb said Texas, along with 23 other states, is pushing back hard against the order.
“Almost half of the attorney general’s in the United States wrote regarding the OSHA vaccine requirement for employers with 100 or more employees,” Nebb said.
Nebb said the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, also known as OSHA, does have reserved powers for emergency use, but 24 State Attorney General’s dispute how these powers are being exercised.
“What the attorneys general are complaining about, possibly, rightfully, is that OSHA is not going through the proper channels,” Nebb said. “Not following the proper congressionally mandated rules in order to impose this new health and safety regulation.”
Senator Perry said it comes down to the cause doesn’t support the administrative action.
“It’s an overreach,” Perry said. “It’s basically telling the individual to take something, and arguably, they may have legitimate reasons for not to. Health care under exemptions that are not being held in the private sector.”
To view the full letter composed by 24 State Attorney General’s to President Biden’s administration, click here.