Employers, unions should discuss vaccine

In reasonable workplaces, all employees — union and management alike — should be able to reach a consensus on a public health issue.



August 24, 2021 - 10:25 AM

People cheer as more than an estimated 1,000 people gather for an anti-vaccine mandate rally Friday, Aug. 6, 2021 at outside Michigan Capitol in Lansing. (Isaac Ritchey | MLive.com)

The courts seem to be holding that employers can require workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment, but things get more complicated when there is a labor union involved. 

Rather than avoid the issue, employers and unions should be talking about how to make a vaccine-for-all protocol work.

Allegheny County, for example, is requiring vaccinations of new employees only, while the largely unionized county workforce will not be subject to the same mandate. Current employees who are not vaccinated will be required to wear a mask and undergo regular testing.

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